'Health check' for region
CHAIR of the Darling Downs Hospital Health Board Mike Horan and his board of directors met yesterday with Southern Downs Regional councillors and state and federal members to discuss the health needs of the Warwick community.
Mr Horan toured the hospital and visited health precincts across the region yesterday in what was the first of two annual meetings to be held in the Southern Downs.
He told the Daily News the primary role of the health board, formed last July, was to keep local eyes and ears in the regional areas, rather than have them all based in the metropolitan hub of Brisbane.
The board meets monthly, in different communities within the region that spans from Goondiwindi to Taroom to Murgon and then back to Warwick.
"We now have a board who really believes in their community and a board who makes decisions," Mr Horan said.
"All the members intimately know their areas."
The board is broken down into three sub-committees: the executives, finance and quality and safety.
"We do have high hopes and aspirations to do better with our second level hospitals, which include Warwick," Mr Horan said.
"We've got to move with the times and make better use of our hospitals."
He said the board had set a target at the Toowoomba Hospital to ensure 70% of patients were seen in less than four hours.
Three months and a successful accomplishment later and they've upped the ante to 77% of patients.
Mr Horan said he hoped to extend these targets, and others, to Warwick in the near future to ensure the best service possible.
As former leader of the opposition, member for South Toowoomba, ex-professional football player and dairy farmer, Mr Horan said he was in touch with the needs and wants of various communities and would endeavour to see his board meet the needs of all.