Naracoorte clinic continues to play major role in detecting, preventing and treating COVID-19

CARE EXTENDED: Naracoorte health clinic will continue to ensure community members can maintain their regular health checks during the coronavirus. Photo: File
CARE EXTENDED: Naracoorte health clinic will continue to ensure community members can maintain their regular health checks during the coronavirus. Photo: File

Naracoorte has been named under the federal government's $2 billion investment which intends to maintain a range of COVID-19 measures for a further six months.

Medicare-subsidised telehealth and pathology services, GP-led respiratory clinics, home medicines delivery, public and private hospital services will all be extended, as well as further investments in Personal, Protective Equipment (PPE).

Up to 150 GP-led respiratory clinics across the country, which complement state run fever clinics, will continue their pivotal role in testing.

In the Barker electorate this includes health sites in Naracoorte, plus Murray Bridge and Angaston.

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According to Federal MP Tony Pasin, these vital health initiatives play a "major role" in detecting, preventing and treating COVID-19.

Furthermore, he says they ensure community members can maintain their regular health checks while upholding necessary isolation or social distancing.

The $2 billion extension also brings the Australian government's commitment for the COVID-19 health response to more than $16.5 billion since March 2020.

Importantly, the support includes mental health services are delivered over the phone by trained specialists and GPs.

"Our government's response to the pandemic brought forward a 10-year plan on telehealth within 10 days.

Barker MP Tony Pasin

"Our government's response to the pandemic brought forward a 10-year plan on telehealth within 10 days," Mr Pasin said.

"While this has been vital to protecting the health and wellbeing of Australians during the pandemic, it's been a big win for rural and regional communities, particularly those living in cross border communities battling with border closures that made it difficult to access health care."

Critical services

Under the expansion, patients will continue to have access to Medicare-subsidised telehealth for general practitioner, nursing, midwifery, allied health and allied mental health services, where and when they need them.

Telehealth is also being extended for essential specialist services, such as consultant physician, geriatrician, and neurosurgery services. Bulk billing will continue to be available and regular billing practices will apply to all of these services.

Patients will also continue to have access to bulk-billed COVID-19 tests under Medicare, with aged care residents and staff getting priority access to rapid testing.

Mr Pasin added that eligible people will continue to get free home delivery of essential medicines by their local pharmacist.

To date the Home Medicines Service has already delivered more than one million medicines to patients' homes at no additional cost to patients.

This story Naracoorte health clinic pivotal testing role extends first appeared on Naracoorte Herald.