ROALS Hosts' Case Studies


Steven Wainwright - HR Manager - Swan Hill District Health - Victoria

Swan Hill District Health is a public health service on the banks of the Murray River servicing 45,000 within the catchment. Our 8 bed midwifery Ward handles 250 low risk births each year. Obstetric services are provided by stable and competent GP Proceduralists from the local private Medical Practice.

Babies or Mothers at risk are sent to Bendigo Health or Melbourne, as Swan Hill is not a sufficient size to warrant these types of services. Being over two hours from the nearest base hospital can put a strain on families, so where safe, we like to deliver our own.

Like so many other communities, we are dependent on the services of private GP's to provide the medical care in our hospital. Like so many other communities, we are suffering with the shortage of Proceduralists that are the mainstay of local Obstetric and Anaesthetist services.

What happens when our GP Obstetricians need a break or are approaching retirement and want to slow down from the fatigue of many years of being on-call?

Sounds easy, call in a locum. SOLS does that very effectively, efficiently and the funding certainly eases the strain. Our needs start at GP Obstetricians but they are exceedingly rare. O&G Consultants are the next bet. So far, SOLS has provided a regular supply of locums to give our GP Obstetricians the breaks they need.

Where are we now? We are fortunate to have a regular arrangement through SOLS with a very capable O&G Consultant. We can also fill the odd weeks when necessary. When all else fails, we drag the locums out of bed and they graciously overextend.

Longer term is to find those elusive GP Obstetricians, or an O&G Consultant to come and settle in Swan Hill and provide the services so well deserved for our community.

Milton Medical Centre                                        Milton Ulladulla Hospital

Barbara Thomson - Business Manager - Milton Medical Centre

I am happy to report that SOLS has exceeded all expectations for our practice. Originally we only had one GP obstetrician of the two working here at Milton Ulladulla Hospital who could provide a Caesar service. When that Doctor took leave, obstetric services were ceased locally and patients were required to travel to Nowra about 65 kms away. Our SOLS locum who performs Caesar made it possible for the obstetrics service to continue locally while Doctor’s took much needed leave.

However, we benefited even greater in that one of the locums from SOLS has in fact joined our staff and offers a “week on, week off” arrangement with us on a more permanent basis.


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