Overwhelming interest: Bigger venue for health forum

The Health forum will be a chance for residents to share their health stories. Picture: FILE 275842_07

South Burnett residents will have the vital opportunity to speak up and force change when it comes to local hospital services.

An overwhelming level of interest in the upcoming South Burnett Health Crisis Meeting has led to a change in venue.

The LNP 20th Health Crisis Town Hall meeting has been moved to a larger venue, St John’s Lutheran Primary School Hall, to ensure enough room is available for everyone who would like to attend on Tuesday 9 August.

When the meeting, set to give residents an opportunity to speak up about their local health and hospital services, was first announced there was an overwhelming number of residents expressing their interest in registering.

The meeting will be an important opportunity for residents to share their first-hand experiences of their local healthcare services.

Member for Nanango, Deb Frecklington thanked those residents for their interest in the meeting.

“I would like to thank everyone who has registered so far and look forward to this important opportunity for our community to have their say and make a contribution towards helping to fix the system,” she said.

“Our doctors, nurses and other health staff are working as hard as they can, but the Queensland Health system is failing both them and patients.”

The LNP’s 20th Queensland Health Crisis Town Hall meeting will be an important opportunity for residents to share their firsthand experiences of the healthcare services.

“Every day I receive complaints from patients and staff about our local hospital services in Kingaroy, Murgon and Nanango,” she said.

“Since the opening of the new Kingaroy Hospital in early 2021, I have been asking the Labor Government questions about the staffing at the facility, problems with its construction and the lack of services we are still experiencing,” Mrs Frecklington said.

“I’m always talking about the lack of mental health services, the lack of palliative care services and pediatrician services -what we see is a $92 million hospital that has been built, it was meant to be $62 million.

“It’s blown out… and the hospital is broken -the hospital floods, the doors don’t work, the nurses aren’t supported and the nurses are severely understaffed and what that is leading to is a major crisis within the South Burnett health system.”

Mrs Frecklington raised the question as to why there was no increase in mental health services, or specific mental health beds, in the new hospital, since the region has one of the highest rates of suicide in the state.

Opposition Leader David Crisafulli and Shadow Minister for Health, Ros Bates will be attending the meeting on 9 August.

“We want to hear people’s stories so we can keep pressing the State Government to listen and take some real action,” Mrs Frecklington said.

The meeting will now be held at the St John’s Lutheran Primary School Hall (92 Ivy St, Kingaroy).

Registration is from 10am, with the meeting to start at 10.30am on Tuesday, 9 August.