May 27, 2022
Member for Nanango Deb Frecklington says South Burnett patients are once again enduring unacceptable wait times for their Patient Travel Subsidy Scheme claims.
Mrs Frecklington said that over recent months, she had been asked to advocate on behalf of local residents who had been waiting more than three months to receive their subsidies.
“Wait times have now blown out to 12 weeks (60 working days) which is double the processing time Queensland Health states in its own guidelines,” Mrs Frecklington said.
“This really is unacceptable. Especially when the lengthy wait times affect the most vulnerable members of our community, many of whom are pensioners and are undergoing treatment for cancer and other serious conditions.
“People from the South Burnett rely on the Patient Travel Subsidy Scheme to allow them to afford treatment and many must travel at least two hours to see a specialist or to undergo surgery as most specialist services are not available locally.
“Sadly, this is just a repeat of a similar situation which occurred throughout 2017 and 2018 when wait times were also out of control.
“I have written to the Health Minister to ask why this is occurring again and what actions are being taken to clear the backlog.
“It is obvious there is a staffing issue delaying the processing of these applications and it needs to be fixed.”
Mrs Frecklington has sought information about:
- The wait time for processing of claims by the Darling Downs Hospital and Health Service
- The reasons for the extended wait times
- How often the PTSS applications ‘box’ is emptied at Kingaroy, Murgon and Nanango hospitals and forwarded for processing
- Actions being taken to clear the applications backlog