New Wilcannia hospital and health service opens
The Commonwealth Minister for Health and Ageing, Senator Kay Patterson, today congratulated the people of Wilcannia on the opening of a new health facility that will provide valuable services to the community.
19 April 2002
New Wilcannia hospital and health service opensThe Commonwealth Minister for Health and Ageing, Senator Kay Patterson, today congratulated the people of Wilcannia on the opening of a new health facility that will provide valuable services to the community.
The health service, which opened today in the redeveloped Wilcannia Hospital, will provide integrated services including community health, emergency, in-patient and residential aged care places.
"This service is an excellent example of how the Commonwealth and the State Government can work in partnership with the indigenous community to improve health services," Senator Patterson said.
The service was originally funded jointly by the Commonwealth and the NSW State Government as an Aboriginal Coordinated Care Trial. The Commonwealth has contributed over $4 million for the service since 1998.
"The new building provides an excellent base for the expansion of services in the area," Senator Patterson said. "While the service has traditionally focussed on hospital services, through the Aboriginal Coordinated Care Trial the focus has moved to include primary care. New services are to include jointly funded aged care."
Negotiations are underway to establish the longer-term service delivery and continuing joint funding arrangements for Wilcannia. Senator Patterson said the Commonwealth is committed to continuing its current levels of support of over $600,000 a year, and providing extra aged care funds.
"The Commonwealth is keen to build on the experiences of the Aboriginal Coordinated Care Trial and is committed to supporting the Wilcannia community in the long term," she said. "The Commonwealth wants to ensure that the funding levels established during the trial continue and additional funds are provided to support the expanded role in aged care."
Media Contact: Marnie Gafney, Minister Patterson's office: (03) 9657 9577