Clinic a tribute to community

19 Mar, 2008 10:48 AM

WITH the Milton Hospital cancer clinic set to open its doors next month, the area health service has given the facility its full support.

South Eastern Sydney Illawarra Area Health Service CEO Terry Clout toured the centre with Cancer Outpatients Appeal committee members last Wednesday and said the facility was a tribute to the Milton-Ulladulla community.

"This centre is a real tribute to the enormous contribution by the community and the committee members," he said.


"It is a tremendous responsibility for the committee to take on such as project from fundraising right through to design and construction,"


Mr Clout said the community had worked well with local doctors and health staff to get the centre up and running.

"A good relationship between GPs, the community and health staff is critical to the success of a project like this.

"This is one example of what that good relationship can achieve."

He said last week's meeting was the first to organise the running of the facility once the doors open.

"It will be managed by hospital manager Judy Nelmes and the health service staff.

"The health service is committed to working with the community on an ongoing basis."

Mr Clout said there had been "some cynicism" about the future operation of the centre.

"The health service is 100 per cent committed to running the centre as a cancer clinic," he told the Times.

"I am giving an unqualified undertaking that it will be used for the purposes that the community intended and that will always have priority.

"That's not to say that additional services won't also operate out of the building if the community sees such a need."

Mr Clout said he was looking forward to the clinic opening its doors soon.

"We're keen to have everything finalised and to get the centre up and running.

"It's very exciting and I'm always blown away by what a community can achieve.

"This is the sort of project that makes rural communities," he said.

Mr Clout has held the CEO position since October and this was his second visit to Milton Hospital which lies at the southern end of his mega health service.

Outpatients Appeal president Dee Carrington met with Mr Clout and said she was pleased the health service had continued to support the project, which the community so obviously required.

She said the building was almost complete and is expected to be opened early in April once council and health service inspections are finalised.