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    Rhian Jones.

Stawell Regional Health in hospital merger talks

Stawell Regional Health board has confirmed it is ‘part of a conversation’ involving a proposed merger between health services across the Wimmera.

Board chair Rhian Jones said the organisation needed to follow developments closely to ‘gain a solid understanding of what is happening in our region – and what opportunities or impacts there may be for Stawell Regional Health and our community’.

She said Stawell Regional Health was inviting the community to participate in future planning for health services through a range of consultation activities from March 1 to May 21. 

“We want to plan for the future, find new ways to address challenges, provide more services and most of all, to ensure Stawell Regional Health is a service that cares for our community well into the future.  We want to ensure people get the right care, at the right time, in the right place – and to deliver care close to home where possible, through the health service,” she said.

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“The board has confirmed the need for a 10 to 20-year long-term plan. The healthcare environment is changing at an unprecedented rate. The board wants to ensure that Stawell continues to have a health service that is viable well into the future, provides the services the community needs and has an active role in the region’s service-delivery model for the benefit of our entire region.

“During the past 12 months we learnt how well the Grampians region works together, particularly during COVID-19, and by doing so, we can support a much stronger approach to health care for everyone.

“We are now launching the opportunity to participate in Stawell Regional Health’s biggest consultation process ever held.  We are wanting to hear your views on health service priorities and opportunities.

“We will provide a range of ways for the community to provide feedback.

“As we plan for our future we need to consider what services we need to provide – and how best to provide them. Can we meet the needs of our community by remaining a stand-alone health service? Would there be benefits in strengthening our partnerships with other health services? Or should we be thinking about a voluntary amalgamation within the region?

“We are a strong health service with a proud history, and what we do want to do is to sit at the same table and play an active role in the decision-making processes that will inform healthcare for the whole Grampians region. 

“We want you to have a seat at the table and to shape our future plan by participating in a range of consultation opportunities, including surveys, meetings, community consultation sessions, focus groups and submissions.”

For more information about the health services plans people can go to: