If you live in the Bulahdelah area, have an interest in the health of your local community and would like to play a role in helping to ensure the effective delivery of health services, then a new local health committee would love to hear from you.
The Bulahdelah Health Committee is looking for motivated volunteers to join them in working towards better health in the local community.
Acting Health Service Manager at Bulahdelah Hospital Kathryn Westwood said the committee started several months ago and is keen to get more people involved.
Across Hunter New England Health, local committees work with their health service manager and community partners to represent the community on matters relating to health and health service delivery.
"The committee works with us to ensure we understand the needs of our local community and provide a community perspective to ensure effective delivery of health services," she said.
"We have a number of community members, including some young people, and we would love to encourage more people of all ages and backgrounds to be involved. It would be great, for example, to get some young mums involved.
"Recent changes have enabled us to give patients access to a wider range of community services delivered by a broader range of health professionals, and to deliver better overall care and outcomes for residents," Kathryn said.
"We now have GPs, community nurses and allied health professionals together under one roof to provide quality, sustainable care."
The chair of the new committee is local resident Chris Harvey. "Part of our role is to help to identify and define community health needs," Chris said.
"Being involved is really a two-way street – we need people who are not only interested in health but who are also connected in the community so they can be that vital conduit between the local health service and the community.
"There have been a lot of changes lately and the hospital is looking to us to be involved and help be that ongoing connection – to keep the hospital informed of the health needs of the community and the community informed of the services available."
Bulahdelah Community Hospital provides health services for residents of Bulahdelah, Wootton, Coolongolook, Hawks Nest/Tea Gardens, Pacific Palms and many of the smaller communities in between.
More information and application forms are available online at www.hnehealth.nsw.gov.au (search for Local Health Committee), or from Kathryn Westwood on 4987 9900.