Horsham City Council has voiced concerns over the proposed merger between Wimmera Health Care Group and Ballarat Health Services
In a statement, Horsham City Council said the amalgamation would potentially erode the provision of clinical services in the Wimmera region.
Horsham City Council mayor Robyn Gulline said the Council was looking to explore whether Wimmera Health Care Group could strengthen its delivery of services through other governance models such as strengthening the Wimmera Southern Mallee Health Alliance.
"Council is of the view that we should be jointly lobbying state and federal governments to support the Wimmera Health Care Group to deliver services required," Cr Gulline said.
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"There needs to be a concerted advocacy effort for funding which reflects the regional role the Wimmera Health Care Group plays."
The Mayors of the six council's in the Wimmera region have requested a meeting with the Minister of Health to discuss their concerns.
In a statement, Wimmera Health Care group said the Wimmera Southern Mallee Health Alliance was unable to meet the health care needs of the community.
"We have reviewed a range of data from the Victorian Admitted Episodes Dataset 2018-19 which captures the admissions of all public health services. This data includes what the patient was getting treated for, where they reside and where they received the treatment," a spokesman said.
"Wimmera Health Care Group would like to deliver 85% of health services to our community. We currently deliver 77% of the required health services.
"Key areas that Wimmera Health Care Group could improve access to services for the Wimmera community include orthopaedics, paediatrics, plastics and general surgery. The current data shows that we are significantly below the benchmark of delivering 85% of these services.
"If these services were delivered at Wimmera Health Care Group, it would result in 1.300 additional admissions a year and significantly less travel for the Wimmera community.
"The Wimmera Southern Mallee Health Alliance cannot provide these services safely."
Earlier this week, several community members voiced their concern during a community consultation for health service merger.
For more information on the health service partnership, visit http://www.whcg.org.au/all-categories/2-uncategorised/599-partnering-for-better-health.
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