Cloncurry residents are enjoying greater access to essential health services, with expanded facilities at Flinders Medical Centre now open for business.
The renovations, funded by Glencore, were valued at more than $150,000, have resulted in additional consultation rooms, three new nursing bays, a dedicated assessment room where sound booth facilities will soon be installed as well as education and staff room areas.
The new rooms are already in use and will be celebrated at an official opening to be held on Wednesday 29 May at the practice.
Senior GP at Flinders Medical Centre, Dr Leonie Fromberg, said the upgrades provided a permanent, fit-for-purpose base for visiting chronic disease specialists, mental health and other allied health professionals to provide services locally more easily and more often.
"The project also provides us with increased capacity to support training for medical and nursing students' onsite and the ability to offer more workplace rehabilitation and occupational medicine," Dr Fromberg said.
"With the extra space we have already been able to increase our mental health support, which is especially timely following the February rain event, and we've also commenced collaborations with North West Rural Health (NWRH) to provide monthly rotating visits from a Dietician, Podiatrist, Psychologist and Exercise Physiologist.
"We know that patients have better treatment outcomes when they are close to home and the support of their family and friends, so Glencore's support for this project has helped us deliver a real win for health in Cloncurry."
Chief Operating Officer for Glencore's copper operations in north Queensland, Matt O'Neill, said the company targets it support towards initiatives with broad-reaching and long-lasting benefits such as this one.
"We conduct a community survey every three years and local residents told us in our 2016 survey that health and medical facilities were their biggest infrastructure priority for Cloncurry," Mr O'Neill explained.
"We are proud to be able to take that feedback and act upon it to provide important infrastructure and meaningful health outcomes for the Cloncurry community."
The project was managed by Central Queensland Rural Health (CQRH), which currently provides management services for Flinders Medical Centre and other regional medical facilities to ensure they remain sustainable.
Long-time rural teaching doctor, Doctor Sheilagh Cronin, will oversee the opening of the extension and also celebrate her retirement the following day after 15 years of servicing the Cloncurry community.
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