Hydro pool is ‘not a priority’ says health minister
CHILDERS' hydrotherapy pool is "unfunded" and "not a priority" for the region, according to Health Minister Cameron Dick.
Mr Dick was officially responding to recent petitions tabled in State Parliament last month by Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett.
Mr Bennett tabled the petitions on behalf of local residents demanding the funding for the $300,000 pool be reinstated.
More than 500 residents signed the petitions.
In a letter to the parliamentary clerk last week, Mr Dick said there was no funding allocated for the pool by the former Health Minister, Lawrence Springborg, and it was nothing more than an election commitment.
"I am also advised that the Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service had not been consulted or advised by the previous government and was not aware of any proposal until published in the local media," he said.
"I'm also advised that the unfunded hydrotherapy pool is neither a priority nor short-term objective of the Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service."
However, Mr Bennett said the hydrotherapy pool was a fully costed and funded commitment by the then State Government to give the people of Childers and surrounding region "access to the health facilities it deserved".
"I will again reiterate that this project was not tied to re-election and I vehemently reject any absurd allegations to the contrary," he said.
"This was a community-driven campaign, supported by Childers aged care facility Forest View and local health professionals."
Mr Bennett said the hydrotherapy pool should be given priority and would prove to be a wonderful asset for the community.
"Hydrotherapy has been proven to have enormous benefits for rehabilitation to help people recover from physical and neurological injuries," he said.
"Childers and the surrounding district is typically an ageing population.
"This facility would ensure patients can access the rehabilitation services they require without having to travel far."
A Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service spokesman said it had not been involved in any discussion regarding any proposal to build a hydrotherapy pool in Childers.