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Roy Butler pushes for action on hospital staffing

Roy Butler wants action on adequate staffing of local hospitals. PHOTO TWH

Getting the attention of a state-wide audience regarding the crisis at the Bourke Hospital was a double-edged sword, according to Member for Barwon, Roy Butler.

Mr Butler said the publicity regarding a crisis in staffing and patient services could no longer be ignored but it could also act as a deterrent to health workers and others considering jobs at Bourke.

“Some things we talk to the relevant ministers and staff about, but not to the media, and the Bourke hospital is a good example,” he said.

“Publicising the staffing situation in the Sydney papers could be good because it draws attention to the issue and puts pressure on the government to provide a response.

“But the last thing we want to do is put people off going to our regional communities and taking up jobs as a nurse or a doctor because people can get turned off by those sorts of stories.

“I was given assurances previously that staff would be pulled from other facilities but clearly that is not working, we are not getting the necessary numbers of nursing staff at Bourke.

Mr Butler said that staff at Bourke hospital are having to work incredibly long shifts, which he said was having an impact physically and psychologically.

“It’s not good for patient care because the poor nurses are flogging themselves to look after people and that’s doesn’t leave room for the best outcomes for anyone.

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