Health Minister Roger Cook today joined community members and staff at the new $3.05 million Wangkatjungka Family Health Clinic to see first-hand how the new facility is being embraced by the community.
A key feature of the clinic is the group room where families can come together to discuss care and treatment of their loved one, recognising the role of family and community in Aboriginal healthcare.
Inside the room is an area set aside for preparation of bush medicine, for any family members or Elders who wish to use it.
The new clinic’s layout has been carefully planned so that men and women can be seen and treated in separate spaces, for cultural security.
The clinic also features striking artwork by respected local artist and law woman Mayarn Julia Lawford. The artwork tells the story of three women going walkabout looking for bush tucker and is placed at the clinic entrance to foster a sense of welcome and trust.
The $3.05 million expanded Wangkatjungka Family Health Clinic also includes a separate emergency resuscitation bay with its own pathology space, a purpose-built ambulance bay and three consult rooms.
The new consult rooms replace the old ‘one size fits all’ treatment room in the former clinic.
Since the new clinic opened to patients earlier this year, it has seen an increase in appointments, with more than 1,000 visits. In addition, more than 100 immunisations have been provided to the community.
The clinic is open Monday to Thursday from 10am-2pm, with remote area nurses providing acute and emergency treatment along with regular appointments for maternal and child health, immunisations, sexual and reproductive health, chronic conditions and other services.
Visiting community health nurses and GPs provide weekly and fortnightly clinics for a range of important services such as mental health, child health and midwifery.
Wangkatjungka’s regular visiting specialists also hold their appointments at the centre and include dental, podiatry, paediatric, physiotherapy, speech therapy and occupational therapy, renal and ear, nose and throat clinics.
The clinic is located on Jilajin land and is a Royalties for Regions funded project.
As stated by Health Minister Roger Cook:
“The Wangkatjungka Family Health Clinic is a trusted community hub where local Aboriginal people can feel comfortable about seeking healthcare.
“It underpins the Sustainable Health Review’s aim to reduce inequity in health outcomes and improve access to care for Aboriginal people.”
As stated by Kimberley MLA Josie Farrer:
“Providing culturally safe care that recognises the importance of Aboriginal culture to the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities is a key priority.
“I’m very pleased that the community has welcomed the new facility, and locals are accessing child health appointments, immunisations, emergency treatment and other vital services.
“I congratulate everyone involved in bringing this new clinic to the local community.”