Council working hard to restore maternity services to Parkes Hospital

WORKING HARD BEHIND THE SCENES: The Parkes Shire Council is trying to ensure maternity services return to the Parkes Hospital. Photo: BILL JAYET.
WORKING HARD BEHIND THE SCENES: The Parkes Shire Council is trying to ensure maternity services return to the Parkes Hospital. Photo: BILL JAYET.

THE FACT there are no maternity services at the Parkes Hospital has been frustrating residents for several years, and at the Parkes Shire Council's July meeting, Mayor Ken Keith OAM assured the community that the Council was leaving no stone unturned to make sure birthing returns.

Cr Keith wanted to make sure Parkes residents know how important the issue is to all councillors and council staff.

"I want to highlight the hard work we are still doing behind the scenes on pushing for maternity services in Parkes," he said at Tuesday's online meeting.

"It has been over two years since we have had a baby born here and for a community of our size we are deserving to have maternity services.

"There is still a lot of work to be done, and we can't hide behind COVID-19 problems and not continue to progress health in our community and utilise our hospital," Cr Keith said.

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Deputy Mayor Cr Barbara Newton, who is a retired Registered Nurse, echoed his sentiments, and talked about receiving some statistics she received from Ronald McDonald House in Orange, which gave her some cause for concern.

"Parkes has the highest usage of Ronald McDonald House in our area, and of all things that take up the time and placements, it is antenatal care," she said.

"This is astounding, and is using up spaces that could be better used elsewhere.

"It's also something we could deal with very well in our own hospital, so I think it places a big burden on Ronald McDonald House," Cr Newton said.

Cr Keith also spoke about the measures Council are taking to ensure that health services here in Parkes don't get left behind.

"I thought it was important the community know what we are working so hard on behind the scenes on, including recent letters to Minister Hazard and collaboration and a submission in regards to the NSW Rural Health Inquiry."

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