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A new centre to treat Post-Traumatic Stress among infrastructure boost

Posted On February 2, 2015

Minister Jack Snelling
Minister for Health
Minister for Mental Health & Substance Abuse
Minister for the Arts
Minister for Health Industries

Minister Martin Hamilton-Smith
Minister for Investment and Trade
Minister for Defence Industries
Minister for Veterans' Affairs


The South Australian Government proposes to invest $252 million over four years to improve the state’s health infrastructure as part of Transforming Health.

The proposal also includes a new Centre of Excellence for the treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress.

Health Minister Jack Snelling said the changes to the way care would be delivered to patients needs to be supported with the right facilities in the right locations.

“Transforming Health is about ensuring South Australians have the best quality healthcare system into the future,” Mr Snelling said.

“It has become clear that we need to change the way we manage our system and a significant investment will be made over the next four years at every major metropolitan hospital to enable our doctors and nurses to deliver the best care, first time, every time.

Mr Snelling said tomorrow’s Transforming Health Proposals Paper proposed investing up to $15 million for a Centre for Excellence for the treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress.

“There is a need to provide more ongoing, long-term support to current Veterans and their families – such as those returning from conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq –– in the area of mental health recovery.

“South Australia already has a strong national reputation for the treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress, with services provided at Ward 17 at the Repatriation General Hospital.

“But these services are located in old buildings which are no longer fit-for-purpose for a leading service.

“We will develop a new Centre of Excellence which will provide the high-quality facilities that we expect for the women and men who have served our country and build on our reputation as a leader in Post-Traumatic Stress services.”

A wide range of Veterans’ groups will be consulted regarding the most suitable location for the new centre.

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Martin Hamilton-Smith said he welcomed any initiative that contributed to the improvement of health outcomes and results in better healthcare for our veterans.

“For too long the people who have sacrificed so much for our nation have been forced to endure dilapidated buildings, engineered in the 1940’s,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.

“Veterans deserve to benefit from state of the art health facilities, while receiving the highest level of care from some of the nation’s best clinicians.”

Vietnam Veteran and former Lieutenant Colonel Moose Dunlop welcomed the $15 million investment.

“If we can build a new facility and keep the expertise that we currently have, then that is a big plus,” Lt-Col Dunlop said.

“Ward 17 was built in the 1940s but the bricks and mortar is well past its use-by-date.”

Other investments proposed include $154 million for the Flinders Medical Centre, $32 million for Modbury Hospital, $20 million for The Queen Elizabeth Hospital and $15 million for Noarlunga Hospital.

Mr Snelling said the funding for the capital investment proposals had come from the Health Capital Reconfiguration Fund announced in last year’s State Budget.

The fund was as a result of $655 million in cuts to health from the Federal Government which caused the State Government to pause the rollout of many of its planned health infrastructure improvements.

“At the time we said we needed to have a further look to ensure the investments we were making were the right ones in the wake of the cuts,” Mr Snelling said.

“We have had a look at the entire health system and spoke to our doctors, nurses and allied health professionals about what we needed to invest in to make our system work better.”

Mr Snelling said further details of the capital investment proposals would be released tomorrow.

Source: ProjectLink.com.au

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