Gold Coast hospital says it has no choice but to cover ‘irresponsible’ Medicare patients

Gold Coast’s Silver Cross Hospital has been ordered to cover up to three of its patients who paid out-of-pocket to hospital workers.

Key points:The hospital is one of many around the country facing a $1 billion shortfall with Medicare patientsThe patients, who are eligible for a lump sum payment, will be covered for at least three monthsThe hospital says there are currently no beds available at Silver Cross hospitalThe hospital said it was “unaware” that the patients had paid out of pocket for work at the hospital and that it was in contact with them.

Gold Coast Regional Hospital, which runs the Gold Coast Regional Medical Centre and the Goldfields Hospital in Sunshine Coast, was ordered by the Health Department to cover three patients who had been paid out the hospital.

Goldsons chief medical officer said the Goldsons had had no contact with the patients and would not be providing any additional information until further notice.

“These are individuals who were eligible for out-patient care in the hospital,” Dr Bruce Williams said.

“We are in touch with the patient and will provide additional information as it becomes available.”

He said the hospital had no capacity for any more staff.

“This will be a significant increase in staff for a small number of individuals,” Dr Williams said in a statement.

“The Goldsins workforces are very limited and we have limited capacity to provide services.”

The hospital has no beds at SilverCross.

Mr Williams said the patients were “unable to continue working” because they had no “plan B” and had had to make the difficult decision of having to pay out-pocket for medical care.

“There are some situations where they can’t work, and it’s unfortunate,” he said.

The Department of Health said it had been in contact by phone with the Gold Cross Hospital.

“If they want to work with us they can,” it said.

“We are continuing to work closely with the hospital.”

The Goldfields hospital said the issue was a “technical” one and it had not been in any contact with any of the affected patients.

“It is currently working with the health department to get the appropriate systems in place,” it wrote in a Facebook post.

“No beds have been set aside for any of our staff at the Gold Fields Hospital.”

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