Central Highland's new GP Super Clinic opens in Emerald
AFTER five years of construction, Emerald's very own GP Super Clinic has been officially opened in a special ceremony yesterday.
The Minister for Rural Health Senator Fiona Nash was there to officially open the $5 million complex, which will offer eHealth and telehealth facilities and will focus on meeting unmet health needs in the Central Highlands region.
Federal member for Flynn Ken O'Dowd said it was satisfying to see years of hard work come to fruition.
"We are very excited to see the completion of this facility, which was constructed with Commonwealth money, and will provide much needed medical care for residents in the Central Highlands," he said.
The project gave a boost to the local economy when Emerald-based builder Ram Contractors was awarded the $3.4 million contract to construct the complex.
Mr O'Dowd said that the project was proof that regional communities benefit from key infrastructure projects.
"The Coalition government is committed to ensuring the health and prosperity of regional communities, and we are achieving this by funding strong local projects with purpose, like the Emerald GP super clinic," he said.
"The new clinic will undoubtedly make life easier for residents to get timely medical assistance and provide employment opportunities for locals."
Mr O'Dowd praised the work of Councillor Paul Bell, chair of the Central Highlands Healthcare Limited Board, and Sentinel GP Dr Ewen McPhee.
"Paul and Ewen have each made outstanding contributions to the project and I am pleased to have worked with such a capable and tenacious team in seeing the facility through to this stage," Mr O'Dowd said.
Cr Bell attributed the success of the project to the positive relationship between the Coalition Government and the Central Highlands Regional Council.
"The partnership between federal and local governments has allowed us to invest the Australian Government's entire grant into the building, which is a facility that the whole community can be proud of," Cr Bell said.
"New specialists are already coming to the Central Highlands because of the clinic, and professionals who have previously supported our community have given the location, design and functionality a big tick of approval."