Working with Blackall-Tambo Regional Council to attract doctors

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Blackall Hospital

The Central West Hospital and Health Service has partnered with the Blackall-Tambo Regional Council in a joint initiative to promote the Blackall and Tambo communities and help attract new doctors to the area.

As part of the initiative, a promotional video will be filmed over the next week on behalf of the partners by Telegraph Station Media in and around the communities of Blackall and Tambo, as well as at the hospital and general practice.

The video also will have a catchy song overlay about Blackall needing doctors and will be launched next Wednesday (19 April) after the completion of filming.

The community amenities available at Blackall and Tambo and the benefits of living and working in the area will be highlighted throughout in the video.

Central West Hospital and Health Service Acting Chief Executive and Executive Director of Medical Services Dr David Walker said the joint initiative with the council would supplement the ongoing
formal recruitment program already in place through Queensland Health.

He said Blackall Hospital and General Practice – which also serves the Tambo community – had four permanent senior medical officer positions available which had been vacant for several years.

“We have been very fortunate that we have had access to our locums who have been delivering excellent services to the Blackall and Tambo communities while we have tried to recruit to these vacant positions,’’ he said.

“But we know having permanent doctors available is a priority for the Blackall and Tambo communities and we are happy to work with council to help recruit new doctors to the area.

“As well as offering an attractive lifestyle, Blackall also offers doctors the opportunity to work in our new, state-of-the-art $20.11 million hospital and general practice that opened in November

“While we continue to recruit actively for permanent doctors through Queensland Health, we see the joint recruitment initiative between us and the council as an extension of our overall recruitment

“The more we can get the message out, the better.

“We always welcome the support of our local government authorities in the Central West and work closely with them in many areas.

“For instance, their support was invaluable during the recent pandemic and helped our health service achieve amongst the highest COVID-19 vaccination rates in Queensland.

“We would not have been able to achieve those high rates without this support.’’

Dr Walker said recruiting and retaining senior medical officers with the additional skills and personal mindset needed to work in country towns had become increasingly difficult in recent years,
with shortages experienced across many remote services.

“The Central West HHS is committed to providing excellence in health care, which requires a safe, engaged, valued and skilled workforce,’’ he said.

“Pre-pandemic, the Central West was very much regarded as an attractive place for doctors to work, train, and get valuable experience in rural and remote medicine.

“With the easing of the pandemic around Australia we hope to be able to recruit more broadly to fill all vacant positions as they occur on a permanent basis wherever possible and as quickly as possible and this joint recruitment initiative with the Blackall-Tambo Regional Council will
certainly support our overall efforts.’’

Blackall-Tambo Regional Council Mayor Andrew Martin said not only were Blackall and Tambo steeped in pioneering history, but the communities also produced some of the highest quality agricultural
products in the nation.

“Our greatest asset however is our people, and we have a wonderfully vibrant, inclusive community out here,’’ he said.

“Our social lives can be almost impossibly busy! We may be remote, but we are most certainly not isolated.

“So, my message to doctors and their families is, you’ll love living here.

“Please come and join us and keep us healthy.’’