Minister announces site for Weston Creek Walk-in Centre

Ian Bushnell 18 August 2018 2

MLA Bec Cody and Minister for Health and Wellbeing Meegan Fitzharris at the Weston Community Health Centre, where the next Walk-in Centre will be established. Photo: Supplied.

The flagged new nurse-led Walk-in Centre for Weston Creek will be located in a refurbished Community Health Centre on Parkinson Street in Weston.

Minister for Health and Wellbeing Meegan Fitzharris joined local MLAs Chris Steel and Bec Cody on Friday (17 August) to announce the preferred site of the new Walk-in Centre, which will be part of a $4.6 million upgrade of the Community Health Centre.

The refurbishment will also see a number of treatment and consultation rooms added within the building’s existing footprint so existing services, like the Maternal and Child Health Clinic, can be expanded.

“This redevelopment fits within the Territory-wide Health Services Framework, which factors in plans to upgrade existing health buildings to ensure we have sustainable health services across our local communities,” Ms Fitzharris said.

Ms Fitzharris said the site in the Weston Creek Group Centre was chosen because it was conveniently located next to the Cooleman Court Shopping Centre, as well as public transport and other local community infrastructure.

Consultation would now get under way with staff before construction on the new Walk-in Centre starts next year.

The centre will be the ACT’s fourth and will provide free basic health care to the people of Weston Creek and the growing Molonglo Valley.

“The Molonglo Valley is expected to be home to more than 24,000 people over the next 20 years, which is why we are planning now for more local healthcare services,” Ms Fitzharris said.

The Weston Creek Walk-in Centre will add to the network of centres being developed across Canberra, including the two existing ones in Belconnen and Tuggeranong, the Gungahlin Walk-in Centre, which is due to open next month, and an additional centre being planned for the Inner North.

The Walk-in Concept has come under fire from some doctors and the Canberra Liberals, who argue it is inefficient and too costly, but the Government has remained committed to rolling out the centres across the ACT.

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2 Responses to Minister announces site for Weston Creek Walk-in Centre
Capital Retro Capital Retro 8:47 am 20 Aug 18

What a joke. There is a serious car parking problem all around Cooleman Court. Meanwhile there is plenty of parking at the still vacant Coombs Shopping Centre.

Garfield Garfield 8:26 am 20 Aug 18

My first thought when seeing this was whether or not the cost effectiveness of these walk in centres had improved at all. If I recall correctly, they were costing the taxpayer about $180 per patient visit, compared to GP practices charging less than half that, and they’re subsidised by the feds though Medicare as well. I still haven’t heard any coherent reason from the government as to why we wouldn’t be better off contracting the running of these facilities out to a GP network to run. With a doctor available for prescriptions etc they would provide more services than now, and the cost to the ACT taxpayer would come down.

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