Companies, QH sign to pay medico

A SPECIAL funding agreement between Queensland Health and a consortium of five coal-mining companies has guaranteed funding for a second doctor at Blackwater Hospital.

The parties came together yesterday to sign a three-year agreement to the provision of $210,000 a year.

The consortium is made up of BM Alliance Coal Operations, Cook Colliery, Wesfarmers Curragh, Jellinbah Mining and Yarrabee Coal Company.

The signing was a renewal of an agreement dating back to 2007.

The funds cover the annual costs incurred by Queensland Health in providing the Medical Officer (with right of private practice) including salary, communications and vehicle package and recruitment costs.

A second doctor at the hospital means 24-hour on-call emergency cover is provided.

Dr Coralee Barker, District chief executive of Central Queensland Health Service District, said it was a positive for the people of Blackwater.

“The coal mines in Blackwater have shown their commitment to the local community,” she said.



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