Office of Rural Health to support doctors in the bush


Doctors will have more support to work in regional and rural Queensland thanks to a dedicated Office of Rural Health set up by the Palaszczuk Government.

Health Minister Steven Miles said the office would be established by Lisa Davies-Jones, the Chief Executive of North West Hospital and Health Service.

“We want to give a stronger voice and more visibility to the issues facing rural and regional staff so they can better help their patients.

“The Office of Rural Health will drive rural and remote health planning, ensure improved access, patient quality and safety, workforce planning and reporting on health outcomes.”

President of the Rural Doctors Association Queensland (RDAQ), Clare Walker welcomes a new home for rural and remote health policy and a commitment to stronger workforce planning especially for smaller communities.

"RDAQ has been advocating for this type of structure for more than 12 months and we believe it's a positive outcome for rural and remote Queenslanders," Dr Walker said.

"It will ultimately benefit our patients as the Minister has committed to invest in central coordination for long term workforce planning and training for rural clinicians. This will improve certainty for health services and rural Queenslanders."

Dr Walker said the shift to a networked model would make it easier for doctors to cycle through regional and country hospitals, helping to address skill shortages and deliver more and better care closer to home for rural patients.

"This development should strengthen access across the whole public health system," she said.

Mr Miles said the new Office of Rural Health was one of several measures to streamline employment processes for all public health staff.

“We’ll also improve employer arrangements for approximately 65,000 employees to ensure staff are focused on the health of all Queenslanders.

“The current way we employ people doesn’t make much sense and can be confusing for staff and patients,” Mr Miles said.

“About two thirds of doctors and nurses and other staff are employed directly by their local hospital and health service, while the others are employed by Queensland Health.

“These changes will make it clear that all staff are united in their goal to deliver world-class health care under the one banner of Queensland Health.

“This will deliver better health care especially for regional Queenslanders and across the borders of health services.”

Chief Executive of Health Consumers Queensland Melissa Fox said lines on a map did not mean much to patients.

“Whether it’s between Longreach and Mount Isa or just one side or other of the Brisbane River all health services should work together to deliver the best outcomes for Queenslanders.

“That just makes sense.”

Acting Secretary of the Queensland Nurses and Midwives’ Union Sandra Eales endorsed the report and the changes to employment arrangements.

“For too long nurses and midwives have argued they should be employed by Queensland Health. Many work between multiple health services and the “prescribed employer” arrangement can make it harder for them to get issues addressed.”

Improving the network of Hospital and Health Services is one recommendation of a wide-ranging report in to Queensland Health governance to be released today.

The report endorses the current decentralised model of health services led by local boards responsible for service delivery and budget outcomes.

Extensive consultation was undertaken with stakeholders including the Australian Medical Association Queensland, the Rural Doctors Association of Queensland, the Queensland Nurses and Midwives’ Union, United Voice, Health Consumers Queensland and the Queensland Clinical Senate.  

Other key recommendation areas that will be addressed include:

  • ensuring Aboriginal and Torres strait Islander representation on all Hospital and Health Boards
  • establishing stakeholder advisory boards to provide advice and direction regarding eHealth Queensland’s operations and Queensland Health’s system procurement function
  • improving the governance of capital works planning and delivery.

Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services
The Honourable Steven Miles

Community Health & Wellness Political Queensland Government

Steven Miles MP : Queensland Government, Deputy Premier and Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services :
1 William Street, Brisbane Qld 4000, Queensland Wide
07 3035 6100
Steven Miles MP : Queensland Government, Deputy Premier and Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services
Showing 10+ recent articles for this business
LNP thinks CHO has too much power 18 September 2020 | LNP members have publicly stated they believe Queensland’s Chief Health Officer has too much power. More information...
Health heroes thanked for their hard work with extra leave 14 September 2020 | Queensland Health heroes fighting COVID-19 on the frontline will be recognised during Health Heroes Week starting Saturday 26 September. More information...
Officers rapidly deployed to first Ambulance pop-up COVID-19 testing clinic 14 September 2020 | Information on locations of testing and fever clinics can be found here: More information...
Queensland Health’s nation-first COVID-19 Healthcare Support Service 04 September 2020 | Queensland’s specialist COVID-19 Healthcare Support Service launched today ensuring thousands of interstate residents who access healthcare in Queensland each month are supported when they enter the state. More information...
Volunteers needed for next phase of trials on Qld COVID-19 vaccine 27 August 2020 | A call has been put out today for volunteers to take part in the next stage of clinical trials on Queensland’s coronavirus vaccine. More information...
Staff, patients and visitors to wear PPE in Greater Brisbane hospitals 24 August 2020 | Queensland Health is today announcing increased utilisation of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) in its hospitals impacted by the recent COVID-19 cluster. More information...
Wait times improve despite COVID-19 13 August 2020 | Wait times for elective and emergency care in Queensland hospitals have improved despite the Covid-19 pandemic, the Queensland Government revealed today. More information...
Surfing icon Andy Mac rides smooth wave from ambulance to operating theatre 08 August 2020 | A great care pathway between Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) paramedics and Queensland Health staff saves heart muscle and in turn, lives when a patient suffers a heart attack. More information...
Vital support flowing for grass roots health care providers 22 July 2020 | The Palaszczuk Government has injected more than $30 million into more than 130 Queensland’s community-based health service groups to ensure their vital services can continue to support Queenslanders during the... More information...
Pop-up testing clinics to help keep Queensland safe 14 July 2020 | Queenslanders and tourists will have greater access to COVID-19 testing with pop-up testing clinics established in targeted locations thanks to the Palaszczuk Government. More information...

comments powered by Disqus

All articles submitted by third parties or written by My Sunshine Coast come under our Disclaimer / Terms of Service