Ryan exposes dental wait time cavity under Labor
19 May 2021
Thousands of residents across the Euroa electorate have been left waiting more than two years to access general dental treatment under the Andrews Labor Government.
Figures released by the Australian Dental Association Victoria Branch revealed 3,475 people were on the waiting list to receive general dental treatment at Northeast and Seymour Health at December 2020.
Local MP and Nationals’ deputy leader Steph Ryan said Labor’s failure to provide timely and preventative dental care was only adding further strain to local clinics and hospitals already struggling to cope with wait time blow outs.
“Under the Andrews Labor Government, regional communities are left waiting in pain and agony when seeking access to vital dental and specialist care,” Ms Ryan said.
“Performance data as at December 2020 by the Australian Dental Association found that on average, the waiting time for local dental care had increased to 28 months in Benalla – 10.5 months greater than the statewide average.
“Wait times for those trying to access denture care has blown out to 31.2 months – almost double the previous wait time for June 2018.
“Some northeast patients have even been left waiting a whopping 3.5 years – or 43 months – just for general dental procedures.
“The proportion of emergency dental care also increased to 55 per cent at Northeast Health, and 53 per cent at Seymour Health, with long waiting times leaving patients more susceptible to serious dental work.”
Ms Ryan said quarterly health services performance figures for January to March 2021 reiterated Victoria’s public health system was at breaking point.
“I am deeply concerned that an increase in emergency dental procedures will put further strain on our local dental clinics and hospitals who already, are bearing the brunt of this government’s waiting time blowouts.
“Victoria’s health system has become overwhelmed on all fronts. If the Andrews Labor Government does not act quickly it will only jeopardise the health and wellbeing of more Victorians.”