Doctor crisis: Wentworth tries to find a lifeline to GP shortage

Wentworth Shire is in the grips of a doctor shortage crisis – but it’s not alone, with many other rural and remote communities across Australia also feeling the pain. This week MELANIE WHITING spoke to the community, health industry leaders and former Federal Health Minister, Farrer MP Sussan Ley to discuss the plan to keep doctors in Wentworth, the future of rural doctors in Australia and why rural health care will be a key issue in the upcoming federal election. 

SINCE news broke late last month of Wentworth Shire’s doctor shortage, there have been reports of elderly residents breaking down in tears as well as anger from the general public. 

The alarm was raised when Wentworth Pharmacy posted a notice in its window warning of the closure of the town’s only two medical clinics, Tristar and Lime Medical. 

Tristar closed its doors last month, while Lime Medical indicated it will be closing its Wentworth clinic and opening a new clinic in Buronga, leaving no full-time doctors in the town. 

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