Victoria Minister for Health David Davis
Field Hospital To Help Flood-Affected Charlton
Victor P Taffa
A Field Primary Care Clinic will be deployed to Charlton early today to help meet the urgent primary health needs of the local community, Health Minister David Davis said.
Mr. Davis said the floods had rendered the Charlton campus of the East Wimmera Health Service temporarily unusable, and the clinic, to be deployed by Ambulance Victoria, would play a key role until the floods subsided and repairs were carried out.
“The Field Primary Care Clinic comprises three air conditioned modular tents, with full equipment, supplies, power, administration facilities and refrigeration for vaccines and other medications.” Mr. Davis said.
“The facility has an Ambulance Victoria Paramedic and a manager, and will operate as a base for local health practitioners.”
“The East Wimmera Health Service and the Health Department will ensure medical staff, including local practitioners, have a base from which to service the needs of the local community.” Mr. Davis said.
Mr. Davis said more than 230 patients and aged care residents had been relocated to other hospitals and health facilities across the North-West because of the floods, with the Rochester and Charlton Hospital campuses and seven aged care facilities affected.
Mr. Davis said the clinic would stay at Charlton as a short-term measure, but would be there until more permanent arrangements can be put in place.
“This is the first time a Field Primary Care clinic has been deployed in Victoria.” Mr. Davis said.
“The clinic has communications equipment including computers and recording equipment, and has everything that is needed to self-sustain a GP service in an affected community.”
Mr. Davis said the clinic was designed to replace local infrastructure in disaster-affected towns so that doctors, either from within the local community or brought in from outside, are able to provide GP services.