Health partnership pays off for Bundaberg patients


A record number of public patients have undergone procedures at Mater Private Hospital Bundaberg as part of its partnership with Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service.

In the last financial year, 255 procedures were performed through the Surgery Connect initiative – which helps to ensure public patients are seen within recommended timeframes.

Mater Private Hospital Bundaberg General Manager Catherine Hackney said the arrangement was helping to ensure that Wide Bay residents receive timely access to the healthcare they need.

The hospital provides orthopaedic, general surgery and gynaecology services through the Surgery Connect program, and also has a long-term agreement to support Queensland Health with paediatric ear, nose and throat (ENT) services.

“Mater actively seeks to support those who need urgent health care and we are committed to working in partnership with the community to make this possible,” Ms Hackney said.

“We are making a significant difference to the health, wellbeing and quality of life of patients, which is of the utmost importance to our team.”

Surgery Connect procedures at Mater Private Hospital Bundaberg are performed by its private physicians, as well as specialists usually based at Bundaberg Hospital.

Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service Chief Operating Officer Debbie Carroll said: “Our partnership with Mater is important for the Bundaberg community.

“It supports the work of Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service and ensures that patients can receive timely elective surgery closer to home.”

“During the July to September quarter last year at Bundaberg Hospital 100% of our most urgent Category 1 patients were treated within 30 days.”

Craig Schussler, 59, is one of the patients to have benefited from the partnership, having undergone bilateral knee replacement surgery in late July.

“My right leg was bowed, my left leg was starting to bow and I was in a fair bit of pain,” Mr Schussler said.

“I went through the public system and they gave me the option of having the surgery at Mater.

“I have a pretty high pain threshold so I may have been able to wait a little longer, but getting it sooner has made a big difference. I’ve been really impressed by the care at Mater.

“I had to stop playing sport eight years ago because of my knees, so I hope to start playing sport again.”

Ms Hackney said Mater Private Hospital Bundaberg was committed to working with Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service to provide Surgery Connect services and was always looking for alternative partnership opportunities to help meet the community’s needs.

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