It isn’t good enough that the primary healthcare of Cairns’ southern suburbs is left almost solely to one doctor.
Edmonton Family Medical Centre is serviced by only one full time GP and as a result has been unable to deliver adequate healthcare with 100 patients being turned away a week.
The Opposition believes we need to build on existing infrastructure with private practices already established in the community, rather than reinvent the wheel with ‘GP Super Clinics’.
Despite Labor promising a ‘GP Super Clinic’ in 2007 it will be more than 11 months before the first patient is seen at the Cairns clinic.
At the current rate of opening it will be over a half a century before Labor has fulfilled its promise to deliver nearly 60 ‘GP Super Clinics’. So it’s anyone’s guess when the Federal Government will be ready to come to the aid of Cairns’ patients.
This needs an immediate result and a cost?effective, long term solution for the community as they deserve better. Cairns needs more doctors now, not a white elephant fours years after it was promised.
‘GP Super Clinics’, as promised, were to provide ‘better access to affordable, high quality, comprehensive and integrated primary care services’. Three years later, only three of the 36 promised Super Clinics are fully operational. Despite falling short of their pledge to deliver 36 ‘GP Super Clinics’, the Gillard Government has expanded that pledge to 60 super clinics.
Providing affordable primary health services is a priority for the Coalition.
The Coalition’s plan for real action to support general practice included:
- $165 million to support family GP clinics to provide access to weekend and after?hours services;
- $200 million for grants to existing GP practices to expand their practices to accommodate more doctors and allied healthcare;
- $350 million to increase patient rebates for level C and D general practice consultations;
- $115 million to increase and expand Medicare rebates for practice nurses; and
- $3 million to improve timeliness of diagnosis and treatment.
For Cairns residents, the ‘GP Super Clinic’ saga is yet another example of the Gillard Labor Government over?promising and under?delivering.
It looks good, it sounds good, but really it’s just another Labor Lemon.