THE Federal and State Governments are working together to improve access to primary care for residents in Blair and to reduce pressure on local emergency departments.
A new Medicare Urgent Care Clinic (Medicare UCC) will be established in Ipswich and the expression of interest (EOI) process has now opened for interested primary care health services to apply.
The Medicare UCC will offer treatment for non-life threatening conditions, a significant proportion of which may otherwise end up seeking care in the Ipswich Hospital emergency department.
Services will be bulk billed and the clinic will open for extended hours every day of the week.
Medicare UCCs will also be established in 10 other areas of need across Queensland: Toowoomba; Logan; Gold Coast; Southern Brisbane; Northern Brisbane; Redcliffe; Bundaberg; Rockhampton; Townsville; and Cairns.
The EOI for Medicare UCCs in Queensland will be run by Queensland Primary Health Networks with submissions to be part of this important initiative closing this Friday, March 24.
The EOI for the Ipswich UCC is open to health providers including existing general practices, community health centres and Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services.
This is part of the $100 million allocated in the October Budget to co-develop innovative primary care pilots to provide better care in their regions.
Minister for Health and Aged Care Mark Butler said the UCC will offer Blair residents an alternative to long waits in emergency departments with urgent but non-life-threatening conditions.
“This will help to take the pressure off the emergency department in the Ipswich Hospital and improve access to health care for people in Ipswich, as well as the Somerset Region and Lockyer Valley.
“This is one way the Albanese Labor Government is moving rapidly to strengthen Medicare and ensure every Australian can get top-quality and affordable health care.
“The UCC will be bulk billed and open seven days a week, meaning local families don’t end up in the emergency department for non-life-threatening care.”
Federal Blair MP Shayne Neumann said he had been fighting for years to make it easier for people in Ipswich, the Somerset Region and Karana Downs area to access high quality healthcare, where and when they need it.
“I was pleased to meet with Darling Downs and West Moreton Health’s Lucille Chalmers recently to get an update on the roll-out of the Ipswich Urgent Care Clinic.
“I know this project is a high priority for the PHN as well, and I expect to see this new clinic up and running from 2023-24.
“Our government is delivering on my election promise to deliver an Urgent Care Clinic in Ipswich.”