Health service aims for award hat trick

For the third consecutive year, East Grampians Health Service is a finalist in the Premier’s Health Service of the Year (medium size) for the 2017 Victorian Public Healthcare Awards.

East Grampians Health Service has won the major award for the past two consecutive years. This year EGHS is one of three health services, along with Echuca and Benalla, to be shortlisted – ahead of 18 other health services.

EGHS chief executive Nick Bush said being recognised and nominated for the award for the third year in succession was a great achievement.

“Our nomination is due to the hard work of our Board members, doctors and of course all of our committed and dedicated staff,” Mr Bush said.

Mr Bush said EGHS has developed a reputation as an innovative and progressive rural health service and a leader in the delivery of safe, high quality integrated acute, residential and primary health care, meeting the needs of communities throughout Ararat Rural City.

“Our staff, in conjunction with our 150 volunteers and five auxiliaries, work collaboratively and creatively to deliver on our commitment of improving our community’s health and quality of life,” Mr Bush said.

“They are all justifiably proud of their work, their hospital and the community in which they live.”

Mr Bush said EGHS is an organisation that embraces its core organisational value of being a ‘Learning Culture’.

In line with this, the Grampians Medical Training Intern program, now in its third year, has grown from five to eight interns.

This is a unique public private partnership, where EGHS is the lead agency, working collaboratively with St John of God Ballarat Hospital and Maryborough District Health Service.

“The program offers interns a thoroughly hands on experience under the direct supervision of specialists and GPs, enabling the interns to develop significant procedural skills,” Mr Bush said.

Mr Bush also highlighted the partnership between EGHS and the Australian Catholic University, which is delivering a Diploma of Nursing Course onsite for 22 students.

“Five EGHS trainers deliver many of the competency units, and this course reduces the need for students to travel to gain further educational qualifications,” he said.

EGHS is also working toward becoming recognised as a healthy eating workplace for the Healthy Victoria Achievement Program.

“We were one of the first health services in our region to cease selling sugar laden drinks within our organisation last year and we are committed to offering healthy food choices to staff, patients and visitors in our cafeterias, when catering for functions and preparing patient/resident food,” Mr Bush said.

“Our objective, and responsibility, is to improve the health and wellbeing of our employees with a flow on effect to the wider community.

“We are seeing the obesity rates in Ararat and district reduce, which is a great thing.”

The Victorian Public Healthcare award winners will be announced at a gala ceremony on October 26 at the Pullman Melbourne on the Park Hotel.

Logan Wilson, Ash Leggett, Terri-Anne Lewis, Catherine Phillips, Amy Cooper, Kerrie Newton, Naveen Mettu and Robert McKinnis celebrate East Grampians Health Service being nominated for the Premier’s Health Service of the Year (medium size)