In addition to our commitment to addressing the backlog of capital works in our country hospitals, we also have several specific commitments to regional and country hospitals.
A Marshall Liberal Government will improve vital healthcare services by upgrading the emergency department at Murray Bridge Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital. Our $7 million investment will double the number of resuscitation and treatment bays and significantly improve the facilities, enhancing privacy and security.
We will deliver 24-hour emergency care at Mount Barker Hospital through an ongoing 24-hour GP emergency service, with a long-term plan to see emergency care evolve as demand grows.
For example, this GP-led service could be supplemented with resources such as emergency paramedics, emergency nurse practitioners and moving to an Emergency Department.
We will also ensure the local health network engages with the Women’s and Children’s Local Health Network to strengthen paediatric services in the hills
A Marshall Liberal Government will strengthen McLaren Vale Hospital’s capacity to provide vital health services in our southern area.
By providing a $500,000 investment a Marshall Liberal Government will enable the hospital to upgrade its infrastructure, including enhancing surgical facilities.
This funding will also enable the hospital to install solar panels, significantly reducing the operating costs of the hospital. This means less money is spent on power bills and more can be invested back into local healthcare.
A Marshall Liberal Government will enable general surgery, gynaecology and urology services to remain at Yorketown Hospital by investing up to $300,000 to upgrade surgical facilities.
We will also ensure an adequate health workforce in the area, partnering with the Rural Workforce Doctors Agency to guarantee that trained doctors and health professionals are distributed fairly across the state while also committing to a program assisting trainee doctors in regional areas.
Our local hospitals have been neglected by a city-centric Weatherill Labor Government for far too long and our healthcare system more broadly has been significantly damaged by Labor’s Transforming Health cuts.
South Australians should be able to rely on their public health services to provide quality care when they need it no matter where they live.
That’s why we will invest in community and country hospitals.
In the last three decades, the demand for emergency services at the Murray Bridge Hospital has doubled, threatening the hospital’s capacity to deliver quality services to a growing population.
As well as serving residents in the local catchment, Murray Bridge Hospital often receives casualties from motor vehicle accidents on the nearby highway and its emergency department responds to over 6,000 presentations each year.
Further, the lack of privacy in the facilities is highly distressing for patients and their families while confined spaces in the current Emergency Department are unsafe for patients and staff.
After years of inaction by the Labor Weatherill Government, the Hospital’s emergency department is in dire need of investment.
The Weatherill Labor Government has cut funding to country hospitals and failed to ensure that health services are upgraded to keep up with the development in the Mount Barker region.
Our southern metropolitan hospitals are under severe stress as the population of the southern area continues to increase.
Yet, under its controversial Transforming Health Plan, the Weatherill Labor Government has cut back hospital services in the south, downgrading Noarlunga Hospital and closing the Repat.
For more than 14 years, the McLaren Vale Hospital has had a contract with SA Health to provide services to public patients, while also providing important services to private and self-funded patients.
The southern area cannot afford to lose another hospital and that’s why it’s vital that the viability of the hospital is secured.
The Weatherill Labor government cut essential health services to the southern Yorke Peninsula with the announcement that general surgery, gynaecology and urology services would cease at Yorketown Hospital from 1 April 2017.
This means that patients will be forced to travel the 260km round trip to Wallaroo or further to access these services.
This is yet another example of the role of country hospitals being diminished by stealth, with growing concern around regional South Australia that such cuts in rural public health services are becoming increasingly commonplace.