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Telehealth unit to improve Gympie’s emergency paediatric care

Nurse Karen Binger and Wishlist’s Communication Officer Jasmine Hodges standing next to the new Telehealth screen at Gympie Hospital’s Emergency Paediatric Unit.

Unwell children and their families presenting to the Emergency Department at Gympie Hospital will now have access to specialist paediatric doctors via a new Telehealth Unit.

Funded by your local hospital foundation, Wishlist, the unit will allow Gympie-based emergency doctors to video-link with specialist doctors at the Sunshine Coast University Hospital (SCUH) for expert advice on the health of the regions smallest patients.

The important equipment will also reduce the amount of unnecessary travel to SCUH, helping to lower personal costs and anxieties already at an all-time high for the families involved in emergency paediatric medical situations.

Gympie Hospital Maternity Women’s Health Nurse Unit Manager Shaneen Osborne said the $19 thousand unit, which was funded by last year’s Wishlist Jazz and Wine festival, will have a tremendous effect on the delivery of accurate medical advice to the Emergency Department.

“The Telehealth machine will help us have exactly the right person reviewing a patient at any given time,” she said.

“It will alleviate some of the stress on parents and staff because it’s incredibly reassuring to hear another voice and opinion on the matter, particularly from a specialist.

“We are very thankful for Wishlist giving us the chance to use technology like this.”

The Telehealth Unit will also allow for wider discussion on the health of the young patient, and whether their condition requires immediate transfer to SCUH.

“The impact will be massive,” Shaneen said.

“We will be able to faster decide if a child needs to be transferred to SCUH or the Queensland Children’s Hospital.

“I hope that it will keep people close to their homes in Gympie rather than sending children away for an overnight stay on the off chance it turns out to be unnecessary.”

Having a specialist at the ready when time is of the essence means that ultimately the ill child can receive the best treatment suited to their condition, helping to improve their health outcomes.

The Wishlist Jazz and Wine Festival is returning this year on the 10th of August, and aims to further help provide funds for hospitals in our local community.

It will be held at Gympie’s Gunabul Homestead and is set to be bigger and better than ever before.

This year’s major sponsor is Cos Schuh from Schuh Group.

“This year will mark four years of the Wishlist Jazz and Wine Festival helping families in our region,” Mr Schuh said.

“If you haven’t purchased your tickets yet, get online and book because you don’t want to miss this one.”

To buy tickets and find out more about the event, visit https://www.wishlist.org.au/