I write in response to a letter appearing in the Clarence Valley Independent titled ‘No Doctor’ from Jim Agnew (CVI 28/10/15) and take this opportunity to clarify some of the comments Mr Agnew has made.
The facility at Yamba is a Community Health Centre (YCHC) and not a Medical Centre. Therefore, the services provided from the Centre are extensive Nursing and Allied Health Services, including Child & Family Health Services.
An Expression of Interest (EOI) has been advertised inviting external non-medical health-related service providers to respond to the EOI to lease rooms within the YCHC to provide such health related services.
Originally YCHC was proposed to be developed as a Health One Centre, which would have included General Practitioner (GP) services but this service model was not supported by the local Yamba GPs, hence the development of the YCHC.
The NNSW LHD is currently in the final stages of negotiations with the Grafton Aboriginal Medical Service (AMS), which will provide services from the YCHC on one day per week. This AMS service will include on occasions a Medical Officer service for its Aboriginal patients.
NNSW LHD future plans are to further gradually expand the services provided from the YCHC. The YCHC Community Health Staff will continue to work collaboratively with the local Yamba GPs.
Chris Crawford – Chief Executive, Northern NSW Local Health District