PHILLIP ISLAND URGENT CARE CENTRE

MINISTER’S STATEMENT

Last Friday I was honoured to join with the local member for Bass, Jordan Crugnale, to cut the ribbon on Phillip Island’s new urgent care centre, part of this government’s $7 billion pipeline of health infrastructure projects across Victoria, delivering the largest health build program in Victorian history. I am proud that this $11.36 million investment was the first election commitment delivered in my portfolio, consisting of $3.3 million in capital upgrades and $8 million in ongoing operational funds. Our commitment prior to the election was in time for the peak Christmas period last year, giving locals and holiday-makers alike access to a free 24-hour service centrally located on Phillip Island, and we delivered. On 21 December we opened a minor injury and illness clinic, which has allowed 10 000 people to receive first-class care at any hour of the day or night free of charge. On 31 October we opened the new urgent care centre, which includes a patient triage area, four treatment bays, including an isolation room, and full resuscitation care, as well as a new staff area. In its first three weeks of operation there have already been 812 presentations. During that visit I was also honoured to present a certificate to local hero Amanda Drennan, who swam 66 kilometres in a shark cage eight years ago to raise more than $62 000 for the centre. I am pleased to say that this is just the start.

As part of our $7 billion infrastructure pipeline, our government has also committed $675 million to build 10 new community hospitals in our growth areas, including on Phillip Island. This hospital will be completed by 2024. Local member Jordan Crugnale is leading the community consultation committee, and I thank her for her tireless advocacy on behalf of the Phillip Island community. Because I do have the last word, I do want to take this opportunity to thank the staff and you, President, and everyone who supports us throughout the year. I wish everyone a merry Christmas and a safe holiday season.