Western communities to benefit from rural health funding boost

Communities across the Western NSW Local Health District will benefit from the NSW Government’s $500 million health infrastructure boost, with $6 million in equipment to be delivered across the region.

NSW Deputy Premier and Member for Bathurst Paul Toole said the funding would upgrade the Local Health District’s biomedical equipment.

“Funding will improve the LHDs scope equipment, and that means if you undergo procedures like an endoscopy or colonoscopy your medical team will have access to the most up to date technology to deliver those services to rural patients,” Mr Toole said.

“The fastest growing part of our region’s population are those aged over 70, which is also the main age group for endoscopy. We know that scopes can save lives by detecting health problems early.

“This funding benefits every community across the region. Our hospitals and mobile services can make use of this new equipment in investigating and treating patients, and as part of the broader bowel cancer screening program.”

Parliamentary Secretary for Rural and Regional Health and Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said the funding would primarily be used for equipment in the LHD’s Base hospitals in Bathurst, Dubbo and Orange, along with other facilities providing scoping procedures in Parkes, Forbes, Cowra and Mudgee.

“The Liberals and Nationals Government is committed to boosting health services for patients in the bush,” Ms Cooke said.

“I’m so pleased this funding boost will make a big difference to the lives of those who call this region home.”

Member for Dubbo electorate Dugald Saunders said the investment in biomedical equipment was on top of the $900 million already being spent on rural health infrastructure in 2021-2022.

“The $241.3 million redevelopment of Dubbo Base Hospital has transformed healthcare in the central and west of the State. We’ve now got the $35 million state-of-the-art Cancer Centre open for patients, and work is underway on our $30 million investment in new car parking,” Mr Saunders said.

“Dubbo hospital is one of the largest providers of endoscopy services in the LHD, and the Mudgee hospital is a key part of the network too. The delivery of equipment upgrades will help build that service for all the communities that use it.”

Parliamentary Secretary to the Deputy Premier Sam Farraway said that all procedural hospitals in the LHD would benefit from the biomedical equipment.

“It’s important that facilities outside Base hospitals continue to have their role supported with service and equipment developments,” Mr Farraway said.

“Regardless of where you live in the region, these upgrades will be of benefit when you’re undergoing a procedure at one of the network of hospitals that provide scoping services, or in a travelling service.

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