RENAL DIALYSIS IN THE SOUTH EAST

If elected in March 2018, a Marshall Liberal Government will upgrade the Renal Unit at Mount Gambier Hospital.

THE PROBLEM

For years, an upgrade of Mount Gambier’s Renal Unit has been a ‘priority’ but not delivered.

The Mount Gambier and Districts Health Service serves a regional population of 85,000.

The Renal Dialysis Unit at the Mount Gambier Hospital is the only such service for the South East and the only one beyond Murray Bridge. The Unit is both substandard and too small.

The unit’s four treatment haemodialysis bays operate 12 hours a day, six days a week and have reached capacity.

If patients on the waiting list require dialysis they will need to travel to Adelaide or Victoria to receive their treatment.

Demand for renal services is increasing.

As well as a lack of capacity, there are numerous problems with the current unit:

  • Insufficient room to allow a companion to sit with a patient during treatment
  • No privacy - all treatment, discussions, and incidents are open to all
  • Lack of facilities in the room means that a single hand basin has to be used for all purposes, including discarding cleaning fluids and washing crockery, and staff have to go outside (without cover) to obtain water for testing chlorine levels
  • The lack of a second access door breaches occupational health and safety requirements
  • The access door is not wide enough to accommodate a stretcher for an emergency case or a hospital bed meaning that inpatient procedures must be undertaken in Adelaide
  • Lack of storage in the unit mean supplies are stored in cupboards beyond the unit requiring staff to leave patients to fetch them

For more than four years, an upgrade of the Renal Dialysis Unit at Mount Gambier Hospital has been sought by the local community and in 2015, the Weatherill Government identified it as the next priority for the hospital.

THE STATE LIBERALS' PLAN

If elected in March 2018, a Marshall Liberal Government will upgrade the Renal Unit at Mount Gambier Hospital.

We will:

  • Rebuild and expand the Unit to increase the capacity from four to six patients
  • Upgrade facilities within the Unit to ensure it supports quality and safe care

A Marshall Liberal Government will work with the community so that community fundraising and public investment work together to deliver a quality facility which can be as comfortable as possible.

Significant community funds have been raised for items such as a blanket warming cupboard, television, coffee machine and window blinds.

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