State Budget: $18 million boost to South West Aboriginal medical care
Fresh off handing down a State Budget designed to address the rising cost-of-living pressures facing West Australians, Premier Mark McGowan stopped in Bunbury to announce a raft of health and wellbeing initiatives that would directly affect people living in the South West.
On Friday, Mr McGowan was joined at the South West Aboriginal Medical Service’s Forrest Avenue clinic by Bunbury MLA Don Punch and SWAMS chief executive, where he announced $18.3 million of funding to boost the service’s capabilities.
“One of the things we wanted to do with this Budget was to make sure we funded important initiatives for health across regional WA,” he said on Friday to the packed medical centre.
“Here in Bunbury we are contributing $18m to the South West Aboriginal Medical Service new facility to provide the right accommodation and support for this important medical service across the South West.
“The Commonwealth will be matching that money, so that’s a $36m commitment to health here in Bunbury to service both this community, and the South West community.”
The funds will go towards to building a new Aboriginal health hub in the South West.
The purpose-built hub would improve access to services that best meet the needs of local Aboriginal people, including culturally appropriate care, which can lead to better diagnosis and treatment outcomes to provide a more comprehensive healthcare model.
SWAMS chief executive officer Lesley Nelson said the funding boost was “momentous” for the local Noongar people.
“This is a very significant occasion for our Noongar people in the South West — this has been a vision for many years, which has been brought to fruition today,” she said.
“There’s been a lot of hard work over a long time. Bringing this to fruition is a momentous day for our Noongar people here in the South West.
“This opportunity will ensure we have the capability to accommodate many of the new technologies, many of the services that we can provide.”
The Premier also announced $7.1m funding towards a pilot program for a Bunbury Infant, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service Hub in Bunbury, while renewing the commitment to the $277.9m redevelopment of Bunbury Hospital.
Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.
Sign up for our emails