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    West Wimmera Health Service chief executive Ritchie Dodds

Doctor relief in Kaniva, Goroke

A new general practitioner is set to bring relief to Kaniva and Goroke communities following a period of health-service uncertainty.

West Wimmera Health Service announced a full-time doctor would soon start working out of the organisation’s Kaniva Medical Clinic, with weekly visits to Goroke also planned.

The news arrived after a period of months where Kaniva residents had only had access to a part-time general practitioner, GP, service and many years since a GP had regularly visited Goroke Community Health Centre.

West Wimmera Health Service chief executive Ritchie Dodds said the service had signed a five-year contract with Rural Doctors Pty Ltd.

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He said Rural Doctors would provide a fully qualified doctor to visit patients at Kaniva Hospital and Kaniva nursing home and hostel residents.

He said the service would also lease the health group’s Kaniva and Goroke clinics, providing bulk-billing GP service predominately to Kaniva, and regular visits to the Goroke clinic.

“This is great news for Kaniva and Goroke,” he said.

“These communities have been very patient for quite some time and this outcome will bring an end to the uncertainty surrounding GP services for the foreseeable future.”

Last month, the service gave provider Tristar Medical Group three-months’ notice, ending a contract to provide medical treatment in the service’s Nhill and Kaniva facilities.

Mr Dodds said the organisation had lost confidence in Tristar to provide enough doctors for residents and to replace doctors when they departed.

Tristar has provided general practitioners for the Wimmera towns since 2007, and at various stages services in Rainbow, Jeparit, Rupanyup, Minyip and Murtoa.

Mr Dodds thanked Tristar for its many years of service.

He said West Wimmera Health Service would provide further updates in relation to the new services’ exact start dates including Rural Doctors’ contact details.

He said an update on the Nhill GP situation was also expected soon.

The entire November 20, 2019 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!