Senator Simon Birmingham is calling on Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to visit Gawler while in South Australia and hear firsthand local concerns about health services there.
It follows Kevin Rudd and Health Minister Nicola Roxon’s visit to Murray Bridge today, as part of national consultation surrounding the Government’s health reform plans.
GPs have warned of “devastating” consequences for health in the Gawler region, as a result of the Rudd Government reclassifying Gawler and surrounding areas from rural to metropolitan.
“If Kevin Rudd and Nicola Roxon can find time to visit Murray Bridge and discuss health, then they should be able to find time to visit Gawler where they know there are very real concerns,” Senator Birmingham said today.
“The effects of rezoning Gawler to metropolitan include fewer doctors, a slashing of training and other funding, and no guarantee of doctors in the after-hours emergency department.
“There is understandably very strong community feeling in the Gawler area about this issue, which I and others have brought to the Government’s attention.
“With Kevin Rudd and Nicola Roxon visiting regional centres to discuss health reform, it would be a slap in the face for the people of Gawler if they can’t find the time to hear their concerns firsthand.”