THERE is no guarantee Eurobodalla health services will be maintained at current levels under the new Primary Health Network, its leader says.
An Illawarra-Shoalhaven-based group, Coordinaire, has won the tender to replace the Moruya-based Southern NSW Medicare Local.
Coordinaire CEO Dianne Kitcher yesterday said she could not guarantee all services would continue.
However, she said the recently formed not-for-profit organisation and venture, backed by Grand Pacific Health, the University of Wollongong, Peoplecare and IRT, would do its best.
“It is early days and the Commonwealth hasn’t given us the contract in writing yet, but we want to work as closely as possible with Southern NSW Medicare Local and do everything we can to minimise the impact on the community,” she said.
Ms Kitcher said she knew of the “great work” of Southern NSW Medicare Local with the Indigenous community and other health programs.
“We are very sensitive to the potential impact on services in the community and want to maintain services to the best of our ability,” she said.
“If we do our job well, the community should feel very little impact.”
However, things will be different.
“We will not deliver services themselves, but identify needs and address them by subcontracting local providers,” Ms Kitcher said.
“The government has said Primary Health Networks are to be smaller and leaner organisations.”
Ms Kitcher said Coordinaire would try to retain as many Southern NSW Medicare Local staff as possible, but conceded that would be difficult.
“We have 150 staff up here in Wollongong and not many of these will be transitioning through,” she said.