Following keen interest and extensive collaboration between the Australian Government and Tasmanian Government, an additional Medicare Urgent Care Clinic (Medicare UCC) will be established in Tasmania, taking the total number of Medicare UCCs to be established in the state to 4.
Medicare UCCs will soon provide bulk-billed care for locals with urgent medical needs over extended hours, 7 days a week.
Medicare UCCs will offer high-quality care for people who need to see a health professional with an urgent, but not life-threatening, problem.
These clinics, to be established in Devonport, Launceston and 2 in Hobart, will be funded by the Australian Government and the Tasmanian Government, with the intent to see patients as soon as practicable by the middle of the year.
More than 41% of presentations to emergency departments in Tasmania are classified as semi- or non-urgent.
The Medicare UCCs will accept walk-in patients and offer Tasmanian families more ways to get affordable medical care at short notice.
At the same time, the clinics will ease pressure on major hospitals across the state, allowing them to concentrate on higher-priority emergencies.
Providers are being identified through a Tasmanian Government tender process, which follows an Expression of Interest that closed earlier this year.
Quotes attributable to Minister Butler:
“Medicare UCCs are just one way the Australian Government is strengthening Medicare.
“Instead of spending hours in an emergency department, local patients will be able to visit a Medicare UCC, be seen by highly trained doctors and nurses, get X-rays or blood tests, and they will be bulk billed.”
Quotes attributable to Premier Rockliff:
"There is nothing more important than affordable, accessible healthcare in our communities.
"The Tasmanian Government understands the important role that the primary healthcare sector plays in caring for our community and we look forward to seeing the establishment of Medicare Urgent Care Clinics across all regions of Tasmania.
"By providing more affordable, accessible healthcare in the community, we can reduce the number of people coming into needing care in an acute hospital setting, relieving some of the demand pressures we are now seeing in our hospitals.
"Our Government will continue to engage with the Australian Government to ensure these centres are established as quickly as practical, so that Tasmanians can get the right care, in the right place, at the right time."