Mackay Hospital and Health Services is working on ways to make the experience better for patients in the outpatient department.
Mackay Hospital and Health Services is working on ways to make the experience better for patients in the outpatient department. Stuart Quinn

Moves to speed up busy hospital outpatient department

MACKAY Base Hospital is making moves to speed up its bustling outpatient department and reduce waiting times for those in line for an appointment.

It comes after Alligator Creek man Dennis Barr spoke to the Daily Mercury last month, airing his concerns about excessive waiting times and the toll that could take on sick or elderly patients.

One of the measures Mackay Hospital and Health Services had put in place is the fast-tracking of oncology and haematology patient appointments to a dedicated check-in counter, chief executive Jo Whitehead said.

It also cushioned chairs in the department (thanks to Mackay Hospital Foundation) midway through this month.

Additionally, the hospital is still looking closely at implementing an electronic ticketing system, or similar measures.

Ms Whitehead said the feedback and suggestions from the public had been leading to a more efficient and comfortable department.

"The outpatients department continues to be an area of focus and the Mackay Hospital Foundation has kindly purchased a TV for the oncology waiting room," Ms Whitehead said.

"Our nurses are also fast-tracking oncology and haematology patients by pulling them from the queue and moving them to a dedicated check-in counter.

"We are still investigating an electronic check in system to benefit all patients."

Ms Whitehead said the department saw about 700 outpatients each and every every day.

"We are always looking for ways to improve the hospital experience for the community and to hear feedback," she said.