I would like to thank the members of the 2020/2021 Committee for their contribution, and for agreeing to stand again in 2022/2023:
President: Pauline Murphy Vice President: Fenella Briscomb Secretary: Fenella Briscomb Treasurer: John Conway Committee Members: Charlotte Blesing, Marlene Howes, Anna Strek and Janette Lovell Consultant VMO: Dr, Derek Bell Public Officer: Fenella Briscomb
The VMO situation is currently stable – Dr. Bell will update us later in the meeting, and I would like to thank him for his continued support.
Thanks to Kevin Doye for his Getup petition which currently has 3,983 signatures and was integral to publicising the threat to Emergency Department cut backs.
Also, thanks to Dr. Andrew Heslop for his excellent article in the Coffs Coast paper which really got things moving.
Gardening – the gardening group continue maintenance of the hospital gardens – with their physical presence at our hospital reminding senior executives and staff that the community remains vigilant and committed. Fenella to report on this later
Barbara’s Garden dedication – a morning tea was held to commemorate the installation of a plaque dedicated to Barbara Moore, which is being fastidiously cared for by the gardening group. Note: Photos and information can be found by following this link: Barbara’s Garden Dedication
Fundraising – I would like to thank the businesses around Bellingen and Urunga for allowing our tins, which have raised an excellent amount over the years. Also the Randall Family of Bellingen Cellars for their continued support. The total amount of funds raised from tins and donations for FY2022 was $1,880.45.
Meetings with MNCLHD – BHAG will continue to meet with the MNCLH to discuss various hospital issues – for example incorrect capital investment figures being quoted which included the community’s contributions as part of their claimed investment figures.
If a critical situation were to occur such as a loss of services or a change in the delivery of core services that one would expect at a local public hospital we would immediately act and confidently call upon our amazing community to rally to the cause.
On behalf of the incoming committee, I would like to say ‘Thank You’ to the amazing community for your on-going support. Your generous donations and acknowledgment of the committee’s work encourages us to continue in what may appear to be a stable and safe situation – though we remain the ever-vigilant sceptic. We continue to represent your voice at all levels of Government and at the senior level of management of the Mid North Coast Local Health District and locally at Bellingen Hospital.
Please contact us if you have any concerns about the service or future of our Bellingen Hospital as we are your voice – loud and clear.
Don’t want to join the committee but want to help in some other way?
Perhaps you are a Facebook or Instagram whizz, you’d like to make a donation, you would like become a gardening volunteer, or you’d just like to be contacted to help out if the hospital comes under threat again. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are pleased to be able to advise that there has been significant progress in the process to recruit Visiting Medical Officers (VMOs) to the Bellinger River District Hospital.
The first advertisement has appeared on the NSW Health’s website. This is the first of a series of rolling advertisements. Each advertisement will have a one month cut off date to allow MNCLHD to assess applications. The position will then be re-advertised.
Applicants are no longer limited to working in the Emergency Department, but can choose ED, Inpatient or a combination of both. The inflexibility of the pre-existing VMO contract was a major stumbling block for prospective VMOs.
BHAG will continue to monitor the situation and meet with the MNCLHD on a regular basis. Assuming that all goes to plan, we should not have to email the community again for some time.
Thank you for your continued support. None of this would have happened if the community had not stepped up, signing the petition, attending meetings and spreading the word. We should congratulate ourselves, and the doctors, nurses and medical staff at the hospital for their commitment. The Bellingen community is truly a force to be reckoned with!