Health | September 12, 2018

Kealy announces rural health workforce strategy

The Nationals Member for Lowan, Shadow Minister for Country Health and Shadow Minister for Mental Health, Emma Kealy MP has announced that an elected Liberal Nationals Government will develop a rural health workforce strategy, as part of our statewide plans for better health for Victorians.

Many rural communities are struggling with the shortage of doctors and allied health professionals and as a result hospitals are experiencing increased emergency department presentations.

“The critical shortage of health professionals in country areas is being experienced now and the Andrews Labor Government has failed to act, with no future planning and worse health outcomes for country people,” Ms Kealy said.

“Waiting times can be up to six weeks, just to get a simple script repeat.

“Our local health workers do the best job they possibly can, but when local people can’t see a health practitioner when they need it puts more strain on our public health system. Country people are forced to miss medication if they can’t get in to get a script or have to travel long distances to see a doctor unfamiliar with their history.

“A rural health workforce strategy will support our rural communities into the future, making sure we’re training people who are willing to live in regional areas and give people local access to health services they need and deserve.

“The Victorian Healthcare Association have been calling for a health workforce strategy for years and I’m proud to announce that an elected Liberal Nationals Government will develop a comprehensive state-wide strategy which will include a strategy for our country areas.”

Ms Kealy made the announcement today at the National Centre for Farmer Health Conference.

Today’s announcement follows a commitment already made by the by Liberal Nationals to provide $4 million over four years to ensure the good work of the National Centre for Farmer Health continues in improving the health, wellbeing and safety of farming communities across Victoria.

“There will be a clear choice this November – Daniel Andrews who has no plan for regional health care or the Liberal Nationals who are committed to delivering a better deal for regional Victoria and who have a clear plan to deliver quality health care into the future for all Victorians.”

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