Inverell mayor Paul Harmon is leading a push to get councils across the state to lobby the state government for better health services.
Following the tabling in Parliament of the Legislative Council Inquiry into Health Outcomes and Access to Health and Hospital Services in Rural, Regional and Remote NSW on May 5, the Country Mayors Association of NSW organised a Rural Health Forum in Sydney on May 26.
"The forum was well attended and the presenters, the Hon Minister Bronnie Taylor MLC, Minister for Regional Health and Minister for Mental Health, Mr Ryan Park Shadow Minister for Health and Mental Health, Mr Richard Colbran, Chief Executive Officer, Rural Doctors Network, and Adjunct Professor, Ruth Stewart, National Rural Health Commissioner of Australia were excellent," Inverell mayor, Paul Harmon, said.
"It was very refreshing to hear that both Minister Taylor and Shadow Minister Ryan agreed that it was of the utmost importance that the consideration and debate on this very important matter of Regional and Rural Health should be approached on a bipartisan basis and should be brought before parliament as early as possible.
"The inquiry found what everybody in regional and rural NSW knows, that health and hospital services in country NSW are below standard when compared to the service levels experienced by those residing in metropolitan areas," he said.
Cr Harmon is urging all regional and rural councils to get behind the efforts of the Country Mayors Association of NSW in its efforts to ensure that all 44 recommendations of the Inquiry are adopted by Parliament.
He is encouraging all councils to write to the Premier and the Leader of the Opposition, requesting favourable outcomes, by adopting the inquiry's recommendations.
Cr Harmon said that would ensure a marked improvement in the delivery of all aspects of health care to country NSW residents.
"This is our opportunity to redress the deficiencies in regional and rural health delivery. We cannot let our communities down," he said.
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