Qual­ity care from doc­tors recog­nised

Pilbara News - - News - Ali­cia Per­era

Two Pil­bara doc­tors have been recog­nised for their long-term com­mit­ment and high stan­dard of ser­vice to pa­tients liv­ing in ru­ral and re­mote parts of WA at an awards cer­e­mony last Satur­day.

Dr Su­san Downes and Dr Craig Drum­mond were ac­knowl­edged at the Ru­ral Health West Doc­tors’ Ser­vice Awards, cel­e­brat­ing the best of qual­ity health care in ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties.

The event in Perth at­tended by the likes of WA Gover­nor Kerry San­der­son and Deputy Pre­mier and Health Min­is­ter Roger Cook.

Dr Downes, who has worked in re­mote Abo­rig­i­nal com­mu­ni­ties for decades, was named the win­ner of the Re­mote and Clin­i­cally Chal­leng­ing Medicine Award.

The Ru­ral Women’s GP Ser­vice doc­tor reg­u­larly visits the Pil­bara com­mu­ni­ties of Ji­ga­long, Punmu, Parn­ngurr and Ku­nawar­ritji to pro­vide Abo­rig­i­nal women with cul­tur­ally ap­pro­pri­ate women’s health care and be­lieves in tai­lor­ing her care to her pa­tients, of­ten speak­ing with them at creek beds and swim­ming holes.

Kar­ratha Sonic HealthPlus GP Dr Craig Drum­mond was also recog­nised for 20 years of ser­vice to medicine in ru­ral WA, start­ing off in the Great South­ern be­fore coming to Kar­ratha in 2011.

Ru­ral Health West chief ex­ec­u­tive Tim Shack­le­ton said the doc­tors were very de­serv­ing win­ners.

“It con­tin­ues to be dif­fi­cult to at­tract doc­tors to work in the Pil­bara, so it is tes­ta­ment to the ded­i­ca­tion of these two doc­tors that both have cared for com­mu­ni­ties in the re­gion for sig­nif­i­cant pe­ri­ods,” he said.

Mr Shack­le­ton said ded­i­ca­tion and long-term com­mit­ment were key to form­ing good doc­tor-pa­tient re­la­tion­ships. “Hav­ing con­ti­nu­ity of care and build­ing a re­la­tion­ship with your doc­tor is so im­por­tant ... to peo­ple liv­ing in ru­ral and re­mote com­mu­ni­ties,” he said.

Dr Downes was also awarded a Mem­ber of the Or­der of Aus­tralia on this year’s Aus­tralia Day.

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