MP push for ur­gent health fund­ing

Midwest Times - - NEWS - Ge­off Vi­vian

Mem­ber for Moore Shane Love has asked Health Min­is­ter Roger Cook to out­line plans to ad­dress what he de­scribes as ur­gent health needs in his elec­torate since the Gov­ern­ment axed more than $21 mil­lion lo­cal health fund­ing.

Mr Love said he had high­lighted grave con­cerns about gaps in the de­liv­ery of health and aged care to the then Health Min­is­ter shortly af­ter his elec­tion in 2013.

Mr Cook said un­der the pre­vi­ous gov­ern­ment, a lot of money had gone to “po­lit­i­cally sexy ar­eas” and per­haps not to the ar­eas of greater health fund­ing need.

“What we had un­der the Roy­al­ties for Re­gions pro­gram was a shop­ping list of things that peo­ple would like, not nec­es­sar­ily a prop­erly an­a­lysed list of what was needed,” he said.

How­ever, Mr Love said a com­pre­hen­sive health pack­age had been crafted to de­liver in­creased emer­gency, acute, pal­lia­tive, short-stay and com­mu­nity-based care, along with an­te­na­tal and post-ser­vices.

“The four-year health pack­age was backed by an ex­ten­sive busi­ness case de­vel­oped by the WA Coun­try Health Ser­vice,” he said.

Mr Love said the $22.46 mil­lion pack­age would have in­cluded im­proved ac­cess to 24/7 emer­gency care, overnight care and two new hos­pi­tal beds at Jurien Bay Health Cen­tre.

It also in­cluded boost­ing an­te­na­tal and post­na­tal care in the Don­gara-Min­genew-Ene­abba area, en­hanced treat­ment of chronic dis­ease as well as the cur­rently funded pro­vi­sion of more aged-care beds at Don­gara Health Cen­tre. Mr Cook said he would visit th­ese fa­cil­i­ties in the new year to im­prove his un­der­stand­ing of the mat­ters Mr Love raised. He said he would also work to im­prove ac­cess to the Pa­tient As­sisted Travel Scheme.

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