RFDS to establish medical practice in Charleville

04 October 2012

The Mayor of Murweh Shire Council, Councillor Denis Cook, and the Chief Executive Officer of the Royal Flying Doctor Service (Queensland Section) (RFDS), Mr Nino Di Marco, today jointly announced the intention to establish a GP clinic in Charleville.New medical practice charleville

The General Practice, which should be set up and available to the public towards the middle of next year, will operate out of the Council's Medical Centre in Edward Street, Charleville.

Councillor Cook said, "This is a great outcome for residents of Charleville and the wider region, particularly as the town's sole GP, Dr Chester Wilson, is looking to retire after many years of service to the community. The RFDS has an outstanding record of service for the people of regional Australia and we are delighted that they have chosen Charleville as the home for this new enterprise."

RFDS CEO Nino Di Marco said the new GP practice was an exciting initiative for the Flying Doctor.

"We are delighted to be able to offer a comprehensive primary health care service through a new GP practice in Charleville, following an historic agreement with Dr Wilson and the Murweh Shire Council," he said.

"The Flying Doctor has had a Base in Charleville since 1943, providing emergency evacuations throughout the south west corner of the state for almost 70 years. We've also provided a range of primary health care services in smaller centres throughout the region.

"We are now able to open the first RFDS GP clinic in Queensland, here in Charleville."

Mr Di Marco said the clinic was intended to operate like a normal private practice, with patients claiming the rebates for services through Medicare. The doctors would be employed by the RFDS, and the practice managed independently by the RFDS.

He paid tribute to Dr Wilson and the Murweh Shire Council who had provided a wealth of positive support and assistance in developing the model for the practice.

Dr Wilson said he was keen to work with the RFDS to implement a transition plan as the new practice was established.

"I'm pleased that we now have plans in place to ensure that the Charleville community has access to a GP service, and I'm confident that my patients will be well looked after by the Flying Doctor," he said.

Although details of the new service have yet to be finalised, Mr Di Marco said that the RFDS would take advantage of the opportunity to introduce a comprehensive service model.

It is anticipated that the new RFDS GP practice will consist of two full-time and one part-time GPs and a nurse practitioner, with the capacity to bring in allied health professionals as needed.

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