According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), 50 per cent of patients waited up to 36 days for public elective surgery in 2012-13, a wait time that remains unchanged since 2011-12.
The AIHW report released on Friday (October 4) shows that average wait times ranged from 27 days in Queensland to 51 days in the Australian Capital Territory.
Average wait times have remained unchanged since they increased to 33 days in 2010, despite the number of admissions growing by 1.8 per cent between 2011 and 2013.
The Northern Territory and Western Australia experienced the highest increases in admissions, at 7.7 per cent and 3.9 per cent respectively.
The growing admission rates saw Australia's public hospitals admit around 673,000 patients from elective surgery waiting lists in 2012-13.
Around one in four patients were admitted for general surgery, (procedures on organs of the abdomen) and one in seven for orthopaedic surgery (surgery on bones, joints, ligaments and tendons).
If you are looking for options to avoid public hospital waiting lists. consider private health insurance. Private cover can give you more control over when and where you receive medical treatment.
By speaking with one of HICA's health insurance brokers, you can compare policies to ensure you receive the private health cover that best suits your needs.