Defence eyes states for health overhaul

Sean Parnell, FOI editor From: The Australian November 08, 2010 12:00AM

MORE medics will work in public hospitals and dozens of military clinics will close in a major restructuring of defence health services.

There will also be a greater emphasis on rehabilitation and mental health care.

As operations in Afghanistan become more dangerous and protracted, multi-disciplinary health hubs are being established on home bases and new links formed with state health departments and universities for high-end care, training and research.

Queensland Health has already agreed to set aside an acute care ward at the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital for military patients. A military surgical team will be embedded at the facility, and Defence will also fund the appointment of a chair of military surgery at the University of Queensland.

Defence documents obtained under Freedom of Information laws show the ward is being provided as a quid pro quo for Queensland Health being able to use the military surgery team and facilities at Enoggera barracks for public patients.

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