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Better access to health services

Welcome to the end of another very busy and productive year across Sydney Local Health District. We have achieved so much this year from the $341 million redevelopment at Concord Hospital, to new resuscitation beds at RPA, and we are still hard at work on the very exciting RPA HealthOne East project at Green Square and Waterloo, which will provide health services to those fast-growing areas.


Last month, almost 2,000 people attended RPA’s inaugural community open day as we gave the community a “behind-the-scenes” view of the hospital and chance to meet our clinicians.

RPA partnered with the Chris O’Brien Lifehouse to celebrate “Pioneers in Patient Care” across the Camperdown campus.

About 100 people took part in organised tours of robotic surgery demonstrations, RPA’s history at its museum and via a guided walks of the hospital grounds and learning about the role of the Emergency Department and different hospital wards. Tours were conducted in English, Cantonese, Mandarin and Vietnamese.

There were also 16 interactive health information stalls and displays set up with medical professionals on hand to share their expertise with members of the community, patients and visitors. Cutting-edge simulation equipment – which allows doctors to replicate real-life scenarios that stroke patients may experience – proved to be one of the popular attractions.

The most popular stall was a free fruit stand set up to promote healthy eating, with about 2,000 pieces of fruit given away throughout the day.

Scores of people also admired the historical drawings and paintings of RPA’s buildings and grounds by Sydney artist Simon Fieldhouse that were displayed in the main foyer alongside beautifully restored historical photographs from the late 19th and early 20th century.

On the King George V lawn, visitors enjoyed performances by the Freeman Aboriginal dance group, boomerang painting, face painting and a range of food stalls.

In other news, our Redfern-Waterloo Healthy Living Link worker Shane Brown has settled into his role and has been busy connecting with primary schools in Waterloo-Redfern to develop a program of oral health checks and promotion; supporting families in accessing Sydney Dental Hospital; and collaborating with Aboriginal mental health services to identify pathways to earlier intervention.

He is also planning a community forum at Redfern in February to workshop mental health access ideas and ensuring Sydney Local Health District has a presence at the upcoming Redfern Neighbourhood Day and Summer on the Green.

If you need help with accessing health services, including mental health, cancer care and general practice, please drop in to Counterpoint and talk to Shane.

And finally, as we wind down for Christmas, may I take this opportunity to wish you a very happy Christmas and new year. Until next time, stay healthy.

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