Dear Clermont community members,
As you know we have struggled to recruit and retain permanent medical officers to the Clermont community for many years. The historical medical model for the Mackay Hospital Health Service in Clermont has been a two doctor Medical Superintendent/Medical Officer Right of Private Practice (MOROPP) model which allows the medical staff to work across both the public and private sector.
Following the resignation of the MSROPP and MOROPP several years ago, we have been unable to recruit to these MOROPP positions. The HHS has continued to engage locum doctors to work across both the Clermont Multi-Purpose Health Service (MPHS) and the Private General Practice located onsite which has been practiced managed by Rural Health Management Pty Ltd for several years.
As you are aware Dr Sarah McLay opened an additional Private Practice, Clermont Country Practice, in Clermont in September 2019 and has also faced challenges in recruiting and retaining consistent medical staff.
The Mackay HHS has been exploring alternative medical models for some time now with the aim of providing a long-term sustainable model that can support both public and private services and we are moving closer towards a new integrated model to support recruitment and retention of more doctors.
The new proposed model is a single Private General Practice with rotational medical staff working fractionally across both primary health care (within the private general practice) and providing acute care, 24/7 emergency cover, inpatient, outpatient and aged care services for Clermont MPHS. This would not only improve access to healthcare and provide an integrated holistic service but would allow the hospital on-call workload to be shared more evenly across multiple positions thus reducing fatigue and increasing recruitment and retention opportunities.
We have been working closely with both Dr Sarah McLay (Clermont Country Practice) and Ms Sandra Corfield (Rural Health Management) in developing this integrated model with the aim of Dr McLay’s Private Practice being the single hub-practice for the community. Dr McLay has been credentialed to provide services within the Clermont MPHS and we are working collaboratively in recruiting two potential medical candidates to work within the integrated model. Further recruitment is also being undertaken for additional positions.
The details of the proposed model are being finalised and ongoing stakeholder and community engagement will be undertaken over the coming weeks including working closely with CHANT, Rural Health Management Pty Ltd, Clermont Country Practice and Clermont4Doctors in developing and implementing the model. We will continue to keep the community informed through our local stakeholder groups and the Mackay HHS website – www.mackay.health.qld.gov.au
We look forward to working with you and keeping you informed as we progress this new model.
Lisa Davies Jones