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$43.8 million has been announced for the Doctors in Secondary Schools initiative which will fund general practitioners (GPs) to attend up to 100 Victorian government secondary schools up to one day a week to provide medical advice and health care to those students most in need.
Gippsland PHN welcomes the opportunity that the Doctors in Secondary Schools program presents for the nine selected schools in Gippsland, ensuring our schools have improved access and integration with healthcare for young people and link closely into the local primary care system.
Gippsland PHN Chief Executive Officer, Ms Marianne Shearer, said that Gippsland PHN will partner with the Victorian Government Department of Education and Training, and work with local general practices and the nine Gippsland selected schools to deliver adolescent health trained GPs to help young people get the health and wellbeing support they need.
“The GPs in Schools program will help improve the access to primary health care for young people in need in Gippsland,” Ms Shearer said.
“Funding for this initiative will also deliver modern, fit-for-purpose consultation rooms on school grounds where they are required.”
“It is anticipated that 20 Victorian Government secondary schools will be ready to deliver GP services on their school premises from Term 1, 2017. A further 40 will roll out from Term 3, 2017 with the remaining 40 secondary schools to be delivered from Term 1, 2018,” Ms Shearer said.
The Gippsland schools that will be participating in the Doctors in Secondary schools initiative are: Maffra Secondary College, Neerim District Secondary College, Sale College – Macalister Campus, Warragul Regional College, Traralgon College – East Campus, Swifts Creek P-12 School, Kurnai College – Morwell Campus, Drouin Secondary College, and Bairnsdale Secondary College.
166 Victorian government secondary schools were invited to lodge an application. Schools with the highest Student Family Occupation and Education (SFOE) index were targeted, with consideration also given to schools in areas with limited access to a GP.