SICK HOSPITAL: Assistant to the Prime Minister Senator James McGrath visited the Kingaroy Hospital last week.
SICK HOSPITAL: Assistant to the Prime Minister Senator James McGrath visited the Kingaroy Hospital last week. Rhiannon Tuffield

Sick Kingaroy hospital gets federal attention

THE dire state of The South Burnett's health services was brought to a federal level today when the Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister, James McGrath, visited Kingaroy.

Nanango MP Deb Frecklington, Councillor and mayoral candidate Damien Tessmann, SB Care CEO Cheryl Dalton and Department of Communities, child safety and disability services acting senior team leader Andrew Saal took the senator on a tour of the Kingaroy Hospital accompanied by staff.

Senator James McGrath said Mrs Frecklington, Cr Tessmann and Mr Saal had persuaded him to visit the hospital.

After witnessing the state of the facility, Mr McGrath said the hospital was in need of an upgrade.

"Going around the buildings, they're old and I think the only thing that's holding them together is the love and care of the doctors and nurses and allied health professionals," he said.

"It's in a functioning state, but it certainly needs a lot of money to be spent on it to bring it up to a modern standard or they need a new hospital."

The hospital's funding is an issue of the State Government's and Cr Tessmann said Mr McGrath was in a good position to advocate for the region.

"Hopefully I can help Damien, Andrew and Deb in terms of pushing the State Government to deliver on the hospital," he said.

"As a senator for Queensland, I'm aware of the issues and the impacts it has on my constituents.

"They are facing decades of underinvestment in the infrastructure of hospitals in regional Queensland and that's coming to a head now.

"The State Government has a few challenges ahead of it."

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