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Flood funding for Lismore primary care providers

20th February 2023

Annette Lenstra of RDN with NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard and Lismore dermatologist Kn GudmundsenAnnette with Brad Hazzard and Lismore dermatologist Kn GudmundsenRecognising the unique challenges that primary health providers in the Lismore community face, the Australian Government and the NSW Government will each contribute $2.5 million in targeted support for eligible providers.

The funding will be distributed in grants for general practices, allied health (including mental health), dental practices, pharmacies, private specialists, pathology providers, drug and alcohol treatment services and Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services in Lismore.

Grants of up to $150,000 will be available, with provisions to consider applications from providers with exceptional circumstances above that threshold.

NSW Rural Doctors Network (RDN) and the AMA (NSW) have been working with the local community to highlight the gap in funding for primary health services. The grant is based on an RDN proposal submitted to the Federal and State governments last year.

Out of 67 local primary care providers surveyed following the disaster, 58 practices, or close to 9 out of 10, reported some flood damage.

NSW Minister for Health Brad Hazzard said, “I visited Lismore soon after the floods and know it has been really awful for the community. This funding will go some way to ensuring that people have access to important health, mental health, allied health and other services. The NSW Government’s $2.5 million will help local health providers deal with the ongoing effects of the flood. It comes on top of $6.1 billion in State and Commonwealth funding to support flood-impacted communities over the past 12 months.”

Federal Minister for Health Mark Butler said, “Supporting primary care providers to recover benefits the entire Lismore community, ensuring locals can continue to see their own GP, dentist, mental health professional or pharmacist. This new funding from the Albanese Government brings our support for primary and mental health care after the Northern Rivers floods to more than $12.5 million.”

Funding for the grants will be provided to the North Coast Primary Health Network (PHN), Healthy North Coast. Eligible providers are encouraged to contact Healthy North Coast today.

IMAGE: (L-R) Lismore dermatologist Ken Gudmundsen and NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard with RDN's Annette Lenstra. 



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