Eidsvold may soon be without a hospital

EIDSVOLD may soon be without a hospital.

Residents have been stunned by the proposal from the Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service that has been brought on by budget cuts.

Eidsvold Hospital Auxiliary Secretary Dot Hamilton said the community was in a state of shock.

"There's been no consultation with the community, that's what hurt the most," she said.

"We feel that the board doesn't know what our little country hospital really provides.

"We don't have anyone (on the WBHHS board). We feel we should be represented."

The hospital has five permanent aged care patients and runs a meals on wheels program from its kitchen.

A member of the Eidsvold Community Advisory Network, who did not wish to be named, was concerned for the live-in patients if the hospital closed.

"Those people, by necessity, would have to leave the community because they have nowhere else to go," the member said.

"If patients can't come here where do they go? If we don't have a hospital we don't have a doctor."

Chief executive of WBHHS Adrian Pennington said not being able to recruit doctors or nurses to Eidsvold on a long-term basis was a factor in the proposal.

"This has challenged our ability to ensure continuity of high quality care," he said.

"We have tried desperately over a long period to resolve the issues facing Eidsvold.

"To this end, a proposal to consolidate beds at Mundubbera Multipurpose Health Service and to provide primary care facilities at Eidsvold has been prepared in the absence of sustainable alternatives."

Mr Pennington said recent additional pressure from a cut in funds provided by the Federal Government had accelerated the need for changes to be made.

In Wide Bay, the cuts totalled $4.9 million.

He said a consultation process with a range of stakeholders including staff, patients, and the wider community would commence immediately.

A community meeting will be held in Eidsvold on Monday night at 7pm.

Topics:  eidsvold, health cuts, hospital



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