Revamp a must to attract doctor
FOR a building which has stood for more than 100 years and served the Allora community as a medical practice for about 30 years, the old facility does not appeal to any prospective doctors.
Allora resident Roy Smith said there were concerns about privacy, hygiene and restricted space in the premises and for the town to attract a doctor it was essential for a building to be revamped.
To combat this problem Mr Smith and Allora Pharmacy owner John Constable have organised a public meeting inviting the Southern Downs Regional Council (SDRC), the Condamine Medical Centre and the public to discuss this important issue.
The purpose of the meeting is to address the need for a doctor in Allora, the possibility of converting the former Allora Shire Council office into a modern medical surgery and to consider using the council funds currently budgeted for streetscape works to cover the conversion costs.
“I was invited to the Condamine Medical Centre to have a meeting with the board and they indicated if we wanted to attract a full-time doctor we had to do something about the building,” Mr Constable said.
Mr Smith thought the former Allora council office would be a great location to renovate as a more modern medical facility and contacted the Member for Maranoa, Bruce Scott, who agreed.
“We asked if he (Mr Scott) would take this up with the Southern Downs Regional Council. After speaking with councillors they immediately saw the benefits for the community,” Mr Smith said.
“We decided to call a public meeting to inform them (the community) of what had been happening and to show their support for the project.”
Mr Constable said the Condamine Medical Centre said it saw Allora as a two-doctor practice, which was not possible in the current location.
“We are talking about a community problem, using a community building, using community money and now we are putting it to the community to seek their opinion,” Mr Constable said.
They have suggested the planned use of the money allocated by the council for Allora’s streetscape be deferred for 12 months and used instead for a doctors’ surgery.
“Maybe we won’t have to do that if we can get council on side,” Mr Smith said.
Mr Smith said they wanted council to give an initial grant to do scoping studies and if favourable results came in to make budgetary allocations for the renovations.
“From the meeting we hope that by explaining fully to them the circumstances behind the strategy the community will indicate to the council their support for the project,” Mr Smith said.
The meeting gets under way at 6.30pm tonight at the Community Hall on Herbert Street, Allora with all welcome.