THE LONGEST flu season since the pandemic a decade ago has led to record Emergency Department (ED) presentations at hospitals across the state.
The results were revealed in a Bureau of Health Information report.
In the Hunter New England Health District, ED presentations were up by 6700 patients, chief executive Michael DiRienzo said.
"It is pleasing to see some of our hospitals have improved their performance despite a large increase in presentations by patients needing the most urgent, life-saving treatment," he said.
Urgent patients in need of resuscitation increased by 33.7 per cent in the district, but most hospitals still performed well despite the busy period.
Gunnedah Hospital saw 87 per cent of its patients leave the ED within four hours, despite a 7.3 per cent increase in presentations compared to the same time last year.
Mr DiRienzo said the quarter's results showed how hard staff had worked.
"Gunnedah Hospital's improvement is due to the additional training we're providing to staff and the streamlining of triage and assessment processes," he said.
Gunnedah Hospital's improvement is due to the additional training we're providing to staff and the streamlining of triage and assessment processes.Michael DiRienzo
Gunnedah was also among the best-performing hospitals for elective surgeries, alongside Inverell, Moree and Narrabri, where 100 per cent were performed on time.
Out of 15 hospitals in the BHI report, eight ranked perfectly for elective surgery wait times, Mr DiRienzo said.
"We continue to ensure more patients receive their surgery sooner by working closely with surgeons and facilities with greater capacity and shorter waiting times," he said.
Tamworth Hospital saw 523 more patients present to ED than the same time last year.
Doctors' rosters have also undergone a review to make more available during peak periods.