According to the Ten-year Blueprint for Public Hospital Development, the pressing situation of ratio of population to hospital beds in different districts will become more serious in 2024. The waiting time for hospital beds in New Territories West Constituency is even longer that residents have to wait 413 people averagely.
The allocation of medical resource has been focusing on the ratio of different age groups while ignoring the increasing needs of hospital bed-days and number of consultation because of air pollution. In fact, there were 145,745 hospital bed-days and 3,569,291 times of consultations related to air pollution last year. It is obvious that the government has to pay more attention to public health and medical system caused by air pollution.
According to our research, based on the Air Quality Health Index (AQHI), if only the readings of 7 or above are counted, the numbers of high AQHI in New Territories West Constituency, including Tuen Mun, Tung Chung and Yuen Long, were the highest within the general monitoring stations in the past two years. Therefore, Clean Air Network suggests:
- Allocate medical resources according to the regional risk of air pollution
- Consider air pollution related health risk as a part of the social impact assessment when establishing new policies