Our meeting with the Health Minister about LCCH

Posted on March 16, 2015

On Thursday morning (yesterday) Together representatives met with the Minister for Health about our significant concerns regarding the opening and operation of our hospital.

Together members have all raised issues of wanting better for patients and their families but also importantly for you, your colleagues and your families.

Children’s Health Queensland’s Chief Executive Fionnagh Dougan and Executive Director Medical Services Dr John Wakefield also attended the meeting.

Ms Dougan and Dr Wakefield acknowledged what the Together representatives were saying and outlined that they wanted to address the issues raised.

The Minister listened carefully and his Chief of Staff took extensive notes.

We didn't get an immediate action plan from the Minister yesterday but we are pleased that he spent double the allotted time because what your colleagues had to say was compelling.

We expect some answers to our requests for urgent action soon.

As the staff who have been keeping going in the face of incredible difficulties you need to know what's going to happen next.

We all need some help, and some significant action.

At the meeting each of the 4 staff representatives - 2 senior doctors, an administrative officer and a health practitioner - talked about the significant issues they (and you) are facing in delivering care for patients and how they are feeling about working at Lady Cilento.

They talked about the urgent need to address staff morale and to feel valued. You need to know there is a light at the end of the tunnel because too many people are already leaving or looking for other work.

They spoke about the urgent issues that need to be addressed to do with patient flow, work spaces, amenities, IT resources and issues with Medirest and that they will only be fixed if staff are encouraged to stay and keep doing the amazing job they have been doing despite big challenges.

We said to the Health Minister that this was not a problem for Children's Health Queensland alone: this was going to require additional support and resources, and acknowledgement from the Minister.

We asked for an inquiry in to what had occurred to date; we asked for an apology to staff who have delivered in exceptionally difficult circumstances, we asked for additional funding to be delivered to assist in recruiting more and retaining existing staff and we also handed over a list of concerns from the parents of patients, which they had asked us to do.

We will now be following up again locally. James Douglas, who is your Together organiser, is visiting the Hospital regularly and will be working with members in individual teams to progress our issues.

We want to see big changes but given our meeting was just yesterday we know we may not get an immediate response from the Minister.

We will continue to raise issues with the management team in the meantime because if we don't keep pushing we won't achieve the change that needs to happen.

You deserve better.

Thank you for all you are doing, we will be in touch as soon as we hear anything. In the meantime please contact James about any matters to be progressed in your teams. His email address is james.douglas@together.org.au

1800 177 244