Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Lithgow council bid to save private hospital

Lithgow City Council is advocating to save the city’s private hospital, following the recent announcement of the facility’s closure by year’s end.

Mayor, Maree Statham and Council staff met with the Lithgow Community Private Hospital (LCP) board last week.

“LCP conducts more than 11,000 specialist consultations and more than 800 day surgery procedures each year,” said Mayor Statham.

“I am also informed that there are other specialists considering practicing out of LCP in the immediate future as there is a high demand for these medical services.

“It is a challenge to provide appropriate health services to rural and regional communities, like Lithgow. I believe the LCP model of delivery, which was established by the local community and has successfully drawn specialist medical services to Lithgow for 22 years now, is actually an example of how to meet this challenge,” the Mayor said.

She said Council was concerned that the cessation of local delivery of the services offered by LCP would have significant implications on the well-being of the community.

“Any reduction in private health services in Lithgow would undoubtedly have flow-on implications for the performance of other medical services and assets clustered around Lithgow Hospital.”

“A Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) facility will soon commence operation and much of its use would be by visiting specialists. The adjacent Notre Dame University Clinical School’s students presently learn from involvement with the visiting specialists.

“The hard reality is that we have a significant aged population and a community with some very real health challenges. Lithgow’s community cannot bear any reduction in the range of specialist and general medical services available locally,” the Mayor said.

She said Council would continue to advocate strongly for the continuation and expansion of the medical services provided by the private hospital.

“I have contacted the NSW Government at both the political and the bureaucratic levels to ensure that there is no doubt about the importance of a solution being found to this setback for Lithgow.”

“I also requested that there be early engagement with the specialists and LCP staff to give comfort that solutions are being worked toward.

“It is Council’s belief that any solution should put the medical specialists, staff, and the well-being of the Lithgow community first and foremost.”

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