I rise to speak on the Beaufort and Skipton Health Service annual report for
2007. It is instructive to point to page 1 where the health service states that,
apart from it knowing that it needs to submit an annual report for legal
requirements, it is aiming to inform its local community, the recipients of the
care and their families and supporters of the activities of the service. That
sentiment flows throughout the report. It is very user-friendly and has a
genuine community thrust.
The major change for the Beaufort and Skipton Health Service in
the reporting period was the massive redevelopment of the new Skipton hospital.
In the middle of the report there is not only a description but large coloured
photographs that speak a thousand words. This will obviously be very close to
the hearts of the Skipton people and surrounding areas in times to come.
In looking at the photographs, one would find it hard to
believe that it is a health service. It is very comfortable and homely. The
photograph I am looking at the moment looks like a lounge room setting of any
The state government obviously has been a major financial
contributor to this redevelopment. The president’s report from Hilton Bourke
thanks the Labor government for its commitment to the Beaufort and Skipton
Health Service and to the community services that are also involved in the
setting. The layout combines a number of things. Apart from the acute beds,
there are also nursing beds and hostel beds which are near the assessment area,
the emergency area and the committee health section, with the allied health
professionals close by. It is very user-friendly, and the services the community need are at everyone’s
In a media release of 3 July 2007 the then Minister for Health
in the other place, Minister Pike, is reported as saying:
- The Beaufort and the Skipton Health Service has had its bottom-line budget
funding increased by 58.7 per cent since the Bracks government came into office.
While I have spent a fair bit of time talking about the new
Skipton hospital, it is not just the hospital but the service in its wider form
that has been a major beneficiary of the Labor government’s health funding,
again underlining the government’s commitment to regional and rural health.
I also make mention of the Sustainable Farm Families project
that has been undertaken by the health service. The motto of the Sustainable
Farm Families project is ‘No point in a better bottom line if you are not there
to enjoy it!’. It is pleasing to note that 100 per cent of the farming families
who have participated in that program have recommended to other farmers that
they become involved in it.
It is these sorts of situations that underpin this government
wanting to go further. That was evidenced by the most recent state budget
announcement for the further expansion of the farm family health service and the
announcement of a farmers health centre at Hamilton. We are concerned about the
need for farmers to have access to health awareness and to have physical checks
but also to build resilience so that they can better manage change, better
manage the climate — —
The ACTING PRESIDENT (Mrs Peulich) — Order! The honourable
member’s time has expired.