The Morrison Joyce Government and the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) will enter into a record 10-year strategic partnership, worth nearly $1 billion, to provide more certainty for regional, rural and remote patients who rely on transfers to Toowoomba Region from the critical aeromedical service.
Member for Groom Garth Hamilton said this historic partnership will provide long-term security to enable this iconic Australian rural and remote service to plan better into the future.
“This new 10-year strategic partnership recognises the vital role the RFDS plays in the lives of Australians and gives the RFDS much more certainty to plan for the future and continue to deliver aeromedical retrievals, primary health care and dental and mental health outreach clinics to rural and remote patients,” Mr Hamilton said.
To support the partnership, the Morrison Joyce Government is committing additional funding of more than $80 million over the next 10 years, taking support for the RFDS to nearly $1 billion over 10 years from 2022-23.
“This builds on the Morrison Joyce Government’s commitment to the RFDS of $327 million since 2018-19, which has enabled the RFDS to undertake thousands of aeromedical evacuations, primary health clinics, dental outreach and multidisciplinary mental health outreach services to some of Australia’s most remote citizens,” Mr Hamilton said.
The new funding agreement will begin from 1 July 2022, and it is expected the Ten-Year Strategic Agreement will be in place soon after.
“The new formal agreement will give the RFDS certainty and allow it to offer more flexible services that are responsive to local patient’s needs,” Mr Hamilton said.
“Expanded and continued support for the RFDS means better overall health management and preventive health care is available for patients across the Toowoomba Region.
“The Morrison Joyce Government is delivering the most comprehensive investment in rural health of any modern era government, and this announcement is just another way we are supporting the health of rural and remote Australians.”