Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service is asking people to leave the Bundaberg Hospital emergency department for emergencies during the festive period.

WBHHS deputy director of Medical Services Dr David Cooper said the region played host to many people holidaying or visiting family at this time of year, which contributed to an increase in emergency department presentations.

“It’s not unusual to have increases in presentations of about 10% above our typical monthly averages during December and January,” Dr Cooper said. “Visitors are away from their usual doctors, which may result in them coming into the emergency department for assistance with illnesses or injuries normally treated by a GP.

“Since it is the holidays, both visitors and locals may also be taking part in recreational activities that can lead to accidents and result in presentations to the emergency department.”

Dr Cooper said these holidays they will be under increased pressure and that patients triaged with non-urgent conditions may experience longer waits than normal.

WBHHS is encouraging these people with non-urgent conditions to seek alternative medical advice rather than present to the emergency department – certainly don’t delay in getting the medical attention needed.

Services like House Call Doctor will be in full-force this holiday season, with House call Doctor’s State Manager Keith Jennings anticipating thousands of calls across the state.

“We’re expecting around 10,000 calls for help this year, with the flu season hitting later than expected and gastro outbreaks hitting Queensland,” Mr Jennings said.

“We’ve rostered on extra doctors across the Wide Bay and Fraser Coast area to meet any increase in demand.

“We know Wide Bay hospitals are under pressure and more so at this time of year with clinics closed, so we’re here to treat those people who don’t need to visit the Emergency Department.”

Queensland Health also provides a 24-hour telephone health service via 13 HEALTH.

Original Source: NewsMail | 24 December 2018