Health authority consults on nurse practitioner

Southern NSW Local Health District has confirmed it is in the process of placing a nurse practitioner at Pambula Assessment, Treatment and Care Centre (ATC) from 8am to 5pm every day for the next four months.

A Southern NSW Local Health District spokesman said the nurse practitioner would be able to triage category 4 and 5 patients, write prescriptions, stabilise presenting patients if required and create a pathway of care as needed.

“The Local Health District is currently consulting with staff over the role, with a view to starting and embedding the position on December 10, well before the summer peak season,” the spokesman said on Wednesday, December 5.

“Pambula ATC is open seven days a week from 8am to 8pm. Patients attending the ATC are either assessed, treated and discharged by the registered nurse; referred to a local GP medical service for further assessment or treatment; or transferred to South East Regional Hospital (SERH) for treatment,” he said.

Patients seeking care for serious illness and injuries should go directly to SERH emergency department, Virginia Drive, Bega. Patients with life threatening conditions should contact an ambulance immediately on 000.

NSW Ambulance takes all emergency cases directly to SERH emergency department.

The spokesman said the added nurse practitioner role comes on the back of $2.6 million of upgrades to the facility which compliments the $187 million state-of-the-art South East Regional Hospital now approaching its third year of operation.

“The 2018-19 budget for Southern NSW Local Health District is over $419 million, an increase of over $16 million on the 2017-18 annualised budget,” the spokesman said.

“Meanwhile between mid-2012 and mid-2018, SNSWLHD has increased its workforce by an additional 440 full time equivalent staff – an increase of 24.9 per cent, including 28 more doctors and 142 more nurses,” he added.