The Alice Springs After Hours General Practice service was officially launched last night at the Alice Springs Hospital by the Northern Territory Minister for Health, the Hon Robyn Lambley MLA.
The new service opened for business on Monday 15 September and has delivered nearly 300 episodes of care in the first six weeks of operation. A vast majority of referrals have been made by the Alice Springs Hospital Emergency Department.
The service is run by Central Australian Aboriginal Congress Aboriginal Corporation (‘Congress’), funded by the Commonwealth Government, and administered by the Northern Territory Medicare Local and Northern Territory Government.
The new After Hours General Practice provides all people living in or visiting Alice Springs with urgent treatment for illnesses such as allergic reactions, acute vomiting and fevers in children and treatment for accidents such as cuts, sprains and falls. It does not replace a regular GP appointment or offer services provided by the Emergency Department.
“This is the first time in Australia that an Aboriginal community controlled health service has used its expertise and resources to deliver an after-hours general practice service to the whole community based in the local hospital,” said Congress CEO, Donna Ah Chee.
“The new service will take off some of the pressure placed on the Alice Springs Hospital’s Emergency Department, which often becomes congested with patients experiencing non-life threatening health problems.
“We hope to provide more services to the whole community, building on the success of our headspace service which, for many years, has cared for young, non-Aboriginal people, and now following this, our new After Hours General Practice service,” said Ms Ah Chee.
The new service is open Monday to Friday, 6.00pm to 9.00pm and Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays (except Christmas Day), 2.00pm to 5.00pm. It is located in the Outpatients Department at the Alice Springs Hospital.
For more information regarding the Alice Springs After Hours General Practice, please contact the service during opening hours on 0499 993 654 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.