It’s time rural health got a better deal.
Robert works in theatres
“I’m from a small rural hospital in the Snowy Mountains. We are the main health service for a community of 22,000 people, plus a travelling workforce for one of the biggest infrastructure schemes in the state and an endless number of seasonal tourists and workers.
For 22,000 people, we have no ICU, no HDU; we couldn’t even get a close observation unit off the ground! Our community must travel interstate to get the care they often require. Away from their families. Away from their support networks. And away from the health service they know and trust.
Staff are covering call on their days off. Being on call means you can’t make plans that will take you out of town, you can’t go out fishing or swimming or do anything anywhere that doesn’t have phone reception, which is pretty bad in the countryside.
So why do we do it? Because we care – we care about our community.
Our rural health minister is very happy to come down and get their photo taken for the brand-new ED and maternity units that have been built, but are unsafe to work in and unfit for purpose.
However, can we get the staff and services that the hospital, and the community need? Of course not!
Our community deserves better care! Our staff deserve better care!
It’s time that rural health got a better deal!”