Albury Wodonga Health's new annual report shows the service had a $206,000 shortfall in the last financial year with a huge increase in spending with employment agencies.
The figures are revealed in the 2022-23 annual report which was tabled in the Victorian parliament on Thursday, November 16.
The $206,000 deficit operating result compares to a $414,000 positive outcome in 2022 and negative tallies of $480,000 in 2021 and $3.55 million in 2020.
Increased costs in employee expenses were cited for the turnaround in 2023.
Expenses for salaries and wages rose from $222.96 million in 2022 to $241.251 million in 2023 but the biggest percentage increase came in the budget for agencies.
In the most recent financial year, Albury Wodonga Health has spent $45.24 million on third-party job providers compared to $27.415 million in 2022.
The annual report also flags that 3573 patients are on a waiting list for elective surgery, above the target of 3166, with 78 per cent of urgent category 2 and 3 elective candidates being admitted within the clinically recommended time, against a target of 94 per cent.
Outgoing Albury Wodonga Health board chairman Matt Burke in his report noted the "funding is inclusive of a previous $108 million invested by NSW and Commonwealth governments to a new acute mental health inpatient unit".
"Planning is already under way and we're incredibly grateful to the staff, patients and community members who have helped guide this process so far," Mr Burke wrote.
In a separate summary of the Albury hospital upgrade, there is a broad outline of what is expected to emerge as a result of the development but it is not without qualification.
IN THE NEWS:
- Two long-sought road fixes get the flick from feds
- Camp out at new Border burger restaurant to win a year of free food
- Five hurt in two-car smash outside hotel
- Exploring the positives and negatives of North East battery bid
- He started the year chasing a 'hoops' career, then he chased the best kid
- Familiar face returns to lead Saints in A-grade coaching debut
"The project will consolidate 24-hour services on the Albury hospital campus, reducing the duplication of services and the need to travel between two campuses, making the overall experience of receiving and providing health care much easier, safer and better for everyone," it read.
"While the final scope of clinical services will be confirmed as part of the planning process, the project is expected to deliver a new intensive care unit, operating theatres, medical and surgical inpatient units, maternity and paediatric services, neonatal care, an adult acute mental health inpatient unit, expanded outpatient and specialist spaces, enhanced support services and additional car parking."
The blurb on the redevelopment outlined initial consultation, stating that it had "provided the team with invaluable feedback and insight to help inform the next phases of planning and design for the redevelopment".
"Construction is expected to commence in 2024," it forecasts.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content: