Jan 29
Innovative model of care for Western NSW

Western NSW residents will benefit from a brand new Virtual Rural Generalist Service (VRGS) providing 24 hour virtual and face-to-face medical services across the region.  

18 new doctors will take on exciting roles with the VRGS, which will provide consultations via video conferencing with patients.

Western NSW Local Health District (WNSWLHD) Rural Health Director of Medical Services, Dr Shannon Nott said the innovative model of care meets community expectations for continued service delivery in rural areas. 

“The VRGS is an extension of the Remote Medical Consultation Service which we have been using across the WNSWLHD for more than 10 years,” Dr Nott said.  

“The primary purpose of this service is to provide local support for local medical and nursing staff – it is not a replacement for our staff.

“We believe this service will help our local doctors to maintain their work life balance while knowing their community is being looked after.” 

“It’s an innovative model of care which aims to set the standard in rural and remote virtual care across Australia and address the longstanding challenges of recruitment and retention across many rural and remote sites across NSW. 

“This is an exciting time for WNSWLHD, as we are leading the way in providing a support service to locals in our communities.” 

The 2019-20 budget for WNSWLHD is $979 million, this is an increase of $35 million on the previous year's annualised budget.

WNSWLHD will also benefit from the NSW Government’s $2.8 billion commitment to recruit a record 8,300 frontline health staff over the next term, including 5,000 additional nurses and midwives.