Victorian government promises $3.7m for new health centre in Ararat

Courtesy of the Ararat Advertiser

AN integrated community health centre bringing together a variety of health services onto the one site will be built at East Grampians Health Service.

Minister for Health David Davis visited Ararat last week and promised that a re-elected Victorian Coalition Government will provide $3.7 million to build the community health centre.

Stage 1 of the integrated community health centre would deliver a range of services, currently delivered by Ararat Rural City community services and East Grampians Health Service, including counselling, dental, health promotion, district nursing, maternal and child health, mental health, physiotherapy and youth services.

“A one-stop-shop for primary and community health care in a brand new facility will ensure services closer to home and enhance the delivery of healthcare for those living in Ararat,” Mr Davis said.

“This project is a tribute to the advocacy of local Ararat people and in particular the president of the board and CEO, who have done a good job of presenting a clear case for what will be an important project.”

Mr Davis said the community health centre will be built on site and bring together a range of services such as dental, counselling, district nursing, while Ararat Rural City Council’s maternal and child health services will also be relocated there.

“It is sensible project which will better integrate the services,” Mr Davis said.

President of the Ararat Hospital Board and Liberal candidate for Ripon Louise Staley said at the launch that health services currently delivered across a number of sites by several providers will be brought into one convenient location.

“Services on one site also means an integrated approach to patient care, with health professionals working together to meet patient needs,” Ms Staley said.

“I am delighted that a re-elected Napthine Government would build a new, much-needed integrated community health centre in Ararat.

“The local community has raised the need for an integrated community health service with me, and I’m pleased that we will deliver this project for Ararat.

“This project will make it much easier for local people to access all the services they need, when they need them.

“This is EGHs highest priority project and is the best plan to take EGHS into the next stage of improvement.”

East Grampians Health Service CEO Nick Bush was pleased to announce the plans for the new centre, which will be situated to the west of the current community health centre in Girdlestone Street.

“I am delighted that the Coalition government has pledged to invest $3.7 million for the development of primary and healthcare in Ararat,” Mr Bush said.

Mr Bush also praised the collaboration between Ararat Rural City, Grampians Community Health and EGHS to achieve this wonderful result.

Nationals candidate for Ripon Scott Turner said the new integrated centre would deliver real health benefits to Ararat and surrounding communities.

Mr Davis said the Coalition Government was committed to better health in Ararat, as seen through the community’s participation in Healthy Together Victoria.

“The Coalition Government has been working with the Ararat community to tackle preventable diseases, obesity, chronic illness and promoting healthier lifestyles,” Mr Davis said.

“We have worked with schools, early childhood services, workplaces and communities to tackle the underlying causes of chronic diseases and address issues such as smoking, poor nutrition, alcohol misuse and physical inactivity.”