Year of highlights at health service

The East Grampians Health Service Board has focused on strengthening clinical governance over the past year, through responding to and enhancing the safety and quality of delivery of health care.

At the annual general meeting held in Willaura, Board president Matthew Wood said this was in response to one of the most important documents to be released by the State Government, Better, Safer Care: delivering a world-leading healthcare system, written in response to Targeting zero, the review of hospital safety and quality assurance in Victoria by Professor Stephen Duckett.

“While the Board is confident that the care delivered by East Grampians Health Service stands up to the highest scrutiny, we are aware that our responsibilities towards our community can always be enhanced and that the Board’s ongoing education is as important as that of the staff who deliver exemplary care,” Mr Wood said.

“It is vital that patients accessing care at our health service feel confident that they are listened to, respected and that treatment is delivered by qualified staff in a safe environment.”

Mr Wood said the Board is extremely proud of the calibre of EGHS staff, who work collaboratively and creatively to deliver on the health service’s commitment of improving the community’s health and quality of life.

“Staff are justifiably proud of their work, their hospital and the community in which they live,” he said.

“It is clear we have a workforce where the Board has invested comprehensively in them and the community is rewarded by their quality care.”

Mr Wood said a highlight of the 2016/2017 year was the opening of the health service’s second theatre, which was a direct result of the support of the Ararat Branch of the Victoria Police Blue Ribbon Foundation.

“I would again like to acknowledge members of the Ararat branch for their commitment,” Mr Wood said.

“As with so many other organisations and service clubs in our district, volunteers and auxiliaries play a vital role in helping us achieve our aims. I know without the commitment of so many people it would be much harder for us to accomplish such great outcomes for our community. I want to acknowledge the foundations, volunteers and auxiliary groups that have made a significant contribution to support us in so many ways.”

Another milestone during the year was the announcement by the Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews that the health service would receive $4.12 million dollars of funding to extend the Community Health Centre.

“This funding will ensure that we can extend the Community Health Centre and Community Nursing building to now include the Ararat Rural City’s Maternal and Child Health Service and Home and Community Care Services,” Mr Wood said.

“Services will be streamlined and will certainly improve services and improve the wellbeing of the community.”

Mr Wood said it was pleasing to report that the health service had an operating surplus, which was achieved through the Board and all members of staff planning and evaluating budgets and investigating efficiencies of program delivery.

“The Board continues to invest in the future of our health service through new programs, recruitment of appropriate staff, ongoing education and a highly effective maintenance and infrastructure program,” he said.

“This is judiciously budgeted for and the return on this investment to our community is a sustainable, qualified workforce caring for people in well-maintained facilities.”

Pictured above: Royal Women’s Hospital chief executive officer Sue Matthews was guest speaker at the East Grampians Health Service annual general meeting and is pictured with EGHS Board president Matthew Wood.