Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Doctor shortage hits Jerilderie

Jerilderie emergency lacks temporary replacement, as Triage nurses and doctors from other Southern Riverina towns cover the medical care at the Hospital.

January 2, 2013 4:02am

Triage nurses and doctors from other Southern Riverina towns will be covering medical care at Jerilderie Hospital for the next month, while there is no permanent doctor.

Unable to find a GP visiting medical officer to staff the hospital for a temporary full-time basis, Jerilderie Hospital will be without medical cover in the emergency department until February 4.

Arrangements have been made, however, to ensure patient care is not compromised, the Murrumbidgee Local Health District (MLHD) has said.

A spokesperson for MLHD said the emergency department will still remain open 24 hours during this period.

‘‘MLHD has a clear critical care pathway for the management of all emergency presentations at a hospital when a doctor is not available,’’ the spokesperson said.

‘‘All patients who arrive at Jerilderie ED will be triaged and assessed by registered nurses trained in emergency care.

‘‘Any patients needing a higher level of care will be taken by ambulance to nearby hospitals for further treatment.

‘‘No acute patients will be admitted to Jerilderie Hospital during this time.’’

Usual arrangements are in place for weekend medical cover at Jerilderie’s emergency department, which is shared by on-call doctors at Finley, Berrigan and Tocumwal.

Jerilderie Hospital has made arrangements with a Tocumwal doctor to visit residential aged care patients.

The hospital encourages people who do not require emergency care to contact their GP or Healthdirect, a free health information telephone line for anyone who needs advice on non-urgent health concerns.

Healthdirect can be contacted on a 24 hour toll-free number 1800022222.

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