Bulgarr Ngaru Medical Aboriginal Corporation is pleased to announce the opening of the GP-led Casino Respiratory Clinic as part of the Australian Government’s $2.4 billion response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
The clinic is for all community members and will service Casino and surrounding areas. The clinic opened on Monday (22 June), with its hours of operation being Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm.
Bulgarr Ngaru CEO Scott Monaghan said the new clinic is one of over 100 the Australian Government has established across Australia. He said it would play a vital role in supporting the Casino community throughout the pandemic.
The clinic will assess people with respiratory symptoms and, where appropriate, undertake testing to diagnose respiratory cases, including COVID-19, influenza and pneumonia. People can choose to receive their results either by text message or via a phone call from the clinic. The NSW Ministry of Health will contact directly anyone who returns a positive result to COVID-19.
“The clinic will provide the opportunity for people to undergo assessment and testing in a safe environment, close to home and will protect our most vulnerable community members,” Mr Monaghan said.
“Importantly, it will support local health care services – taking the pressure off hospitals and general practices by providing dedicated treatment to people with mild-to-moderate symptoms of fever or sore throat, cough, fatigue or shortness of breath.
“I encourage anyone in our community experiencing these symptoms to book an appointment.”
Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan welcomed the establishment of the clinic at Casino.
“The Federal Government is establishing these clinics around the country to assess patients with COVID-19-like symptoms,” Mr Hogan said.
“These clinics will reduce pressure on hospital emergency departments and other local general practices.”
Casino Respiratory Clinic practice manager Marnie Smith said people do not need a doctor’s referral to attend the free clinic. However, she said it is important to make an appointment. Visit HotDoc and use the online booking system or call 1800 856 325.
Ms Smith said from 6 July a mobile unit would extend the reach of local testing, visiting smaller, outlying communities including Evans Head, Kyogle, Tabulam and Mulli Mulli.
Bulgarr Ngaru has worked with the Australian Government, North Coast Primary Health Network, Northern NSW Local Health District and local health practitioners to establish the clinic. Mr Monaghan said he is “very pleased and proud of the way that all sectors of the health system have collaborated to deliver this essential service for the community”.
The Australian Government has established respiratory clinics at seven key North Coast locations – Murwillumbah, Ballina, Casino, Yamba, Nambucca Heads, Kempsey and Wauchope. The respiratory clinics complement NSW Health’s COVID-19 / fever clinics at Tweed Heads, Byron Bay, Lismore, Grafton, Coffs Harbour, Kempsey and Port Macquarie.
Pictured: L-R, lead GP Dr Hannah Visser, Moeisha Caldwell (administration), practice manager Marnie Smith and registered nurse Elissa Rapmund at the new Casino Respiratory Clinic.
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