House debates

Monday, 18 June 2018

Statements by Members

Robertson Electorate: Medical Workforce

1:49 pm

Photo of Lucy WicksLucy Wicks (Robertson, Liberal Party) Share this | | Hansard source

On the Central Coast, Labor are once again running another false scare campaign around health—this time regarding access to GPs on the peninsula. The fact is that since the coalition government first identified this longstanding challenge—a challenge that Labor failed to address during their six years in government—we've delivered $100,000 to the Hunter, New England and Central Coast Primary Health Network working group to tackle both the short-term need and the development of long-term strategies to properly address the shortage of GPs.

Contrary to Labor's scare campaign, since this funding was first announced last year, a total of seven new GPs and registrars have already started working on the peninsula, and the working group will continue to work on investing in other workforce initiatives to help solve this challenge in the longer term as well. We know that the working group is working effectively, because there are now two new permanent GPs in Umina Beach; one new GP at the Ettalong family medical practice; a reduction in the average age of GPs, from 61 to 58 years; and more practices on the peninsula are now accredited to train registrars, with four GP registrars on the peninsula—that's a 100 per cent increase from March 2017. But the biggest indicator of the success of this working group is the positive feedback I get from residents on the peninsula, who can now see a GP more easily than they have been able to in the past. This is great news for people living on the peninsula. (Time expired)