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Noarlunga – Not an Emergency Clinic

The State Liberals have accused the Labor Government of dangerous deception by claiming a doctor-less Walk-In Clinic will provide “Emergency Care” at Noarlunga.

The Australian and Nursing and Midwifery Federation has revealed that the Labor Government’s Noarlunga Walk-in clinic will be nurse-led.

“This doctor-less clinic will not be able to provide the level of care needed by tens of thousands of the people who currently go to the Noarlunga Hospital Emergency Department.”

“The clinic will provide care for a limited range of conditions. It will not be able to provide treatment for conditions that the community would generally regard as an emergency,” said Shadow Minister for Health Stephen Wade.

“It may be a useful service but it is not an emergency clinic and it is no substitute for the Emergency Department that the Labor Government wants to close”.

The State Liberals are calling on the Labor Government to publicly release full details of the Noarlunga Walk-in clinic and emergency services in the South.

Only after the Proposals Paper was released did the Labor Government belatedly advise that the clinic would be 24/7.

It is significant the Labor Government has failed to respond to calls from nurses to clarify whether the clinic will have access to morphine and a resuscitation room.

Local clinicians have told the State Liberals that around 40% of the cases currently seen by the Noarlunga ED would be beyond the capacity of a walk-in clinic and would need to be diagnosed at an Emergency Department.

They fear that the closure of Noarlunga will overwhelm the Emergency Department at Flinders Medical Centre.

The Weatherill Government has failed to release any data on patient flows, failed to release planned budget savings, and failed to conduct a genuine consultation.

“Residents of southern Adelaide should expect more ambulance ramping and longer waiting times for treatment in FMC’s Emergency Department as a result of the closure of Noarlunga’s ED and the closure of the Repatriation General Hospital.

Background Information

The ANMF has released a document which, informed by its discussions with SA Health, states that:

    “Noarlunga ED will be transformed to a 24/7 nurse-led walk in clinic, dealing with:

  • Non displaced fractures;
  • Bladder problems and other infections;
  • Abdominal pain;
  • Severe headaches;
  • Mild and moderate injuries;
  • Worrying rashes;
  • New unexplained symptoms;
  • Worsening of long-term conditions (where there is no current management plan)
  • Mental health walk in emergency service will provide:
     -  Assessment and treatment by a mental health clinician
     -  Direct access to the mental health ward”.