September 18, 2014
A new Kingaroy Hospital is still a key priority for the State Government, but it’s just a matter of finding the $70-$80 million necessary to get the job done.
Health Minister Lawrence Springborg confirmed on Thursday that “nothing had changed” in regards to the priority of the project.
“The Hospital Board has made clear it is the key priority for the Darling Downs, and (local MP) Deb Frecklington has been stridently bringing it to our attention,” Mr Springborg said.
“We will do it, when we can do it.”
A new Kingaroy Hospital has previously been linked by Treasurer Tim Nicholls to the “Strong Choices Investment Program”, projected funds which would be freed up by the sale (or now lease) of government assets such as Stanwell.
Minister Springborg toured the Kingaroy Hospital with Mrs Frecklington and Queensland Ambulance Commissioner Russell Bowles.
The trio chatted with staff and also met up with newly recruited Physician Assistant David Ashard, from Cherbourg Hospital.
David is one of Queensland’s first Physician Assistants. PAs are members of a clinical team who are educated at a medical school to work under supervision of a registered medical practitioner.
Cherbourg Hospital previously took part in a trial of the concept, but this is the first time a PA has worked as a part of the team outside of the trial.
“Changes to regulations came into effect late last year that have enabled Physician Assistants to safely work across their full scope of practice in Queensland,” Mr Springborg said.
“In Queensland public hospitals, PAs can prescribe medication and order pathology tests and x-rays.”
The group then travelled to the new Kingaroy Ambulance Station, which was officially opened in March, to talk to local paramedics and present badges to long-serving members of the Local Ambulance Committee.
Mr Springborg and Mr Bowles presented badges to Kingaroy LAC president John Box, secretary Chris Box and long-serving member Liz Bruce.
The Minister also dropped into the Nanango and Yarraman ambulance stations as part of his visit to the South Burnett.
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