Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 01 Hansard (Thursday, 12 February 2015) . . Page.. 246 ..
It is important that the healthcare system provides for all Canberrans, regardless of who they are, where they live or how much they earn. A priority critical to managing demand on the healthcare system is to implement policies that help prevent illness, injury and disease. Reducing our high level of obesity, helping people to be more active and having a physically and mentally healthy Canberra are key to reducing the high level of demand that already impacts on all areas of our health system.
I thank members for the opportunity to present this comprehensive outline of our program for health services. This is one of the largest areas of the ACT budget. It is one of the most complex, but it is also one of the most important for our community. As health minister, my focus will continue to be on improving access, tackling lifestyle-related disease, illness and obesity, and improving the framework and support services for those with mental illness. These, amongst areas in health, will continue to be a key priority for this Labor government. I present the following paper:
Health priorities for 2015—Ministerial statement, 12 February 2015.
That the Assembly takes note of the paper.
DR BOURKE (Ginninderra) (11.10): Madam Deputy Speaker, I rise to talk more about the University of Canberra public hospital in my electorate—indeed, our electorate—in Belconnen. The University of Canberra public hospital will be co-located with the University of Canberra, which trains the majority of allied health professionals and nursing students in the ACT, including psychologists, physiotherapists, dieticians, exercise physiologists, occupational therapists and pharmacists.
When you contemplate the synergy between the education and training and the service delivery, Madam Deputy Speaker, you will see that there are going to be some wonderful things happening there. The hospital, I understand, will have 140 inpatient beds comprising some 20 mental health beds and 120 rehabilitation beds. Added to that are 75 day places, which is apparently a 30-bed equivalent, and that will be split between mental health, rehabilitation and aged care.
The services will be provided to meet the needs of adult, aged care and mental health patients in a sympathetic and therapeutic environment. There is going to be a range of allied health services delivered, including hydrotherapy, psychiatric rehabilitation, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech pathology, exercise pathology, social work and structured psychological therapies, as well as a range of community services, including memory assessment, nurse practitioner services, fall injury prevention, continence, podiatry, driver and vocational rehabilitation services.
I am pleased that this facility is focused on a comprehensive approach to rehabilitation. This focus on comprehensive service delivery is a hallmark of several of our most effective and inspiring government initiatives, including through care for prisoners released from the AMC and coordinating the many services to support prisoners to deliver an outcome, of which the early indicators are extremely positive, with dramatically lower recidivism rates for program participants. Strengthening families is