'Keep our hospital going'

THE Coraki community is hoping the Northern NSW Local Health District Board will agree to re-establish limited medical services at the Campbell Hospital site within the month.

The board decided at its meeting last week to ask local health district management to investigate the feasibility of operating an urgent care centre on the Campbell Hospital campus while the review of health services for Coraki and surrounding districts is undertaken.

They want the information for the April 26 board meeting.

The move comes in the wake of continuing pressure from the Coraki community, supported by local, state and federal politicians, to re-open the storm-damaged hospital, even in a limited capacity, while the review is done.

The 14-bed hospital has been closed since September.

Health authorities say at least $1.85 million will have to be spent to bring it up to standard and have refused to commit any funds to repair the building until the review is complete.

Save The Hospital/Coraki Village Voice steering committee member George Thompson described the board's decision last week as very encouraging.

"We're hopeful the board will actually agree to re-establish some services at the hospital site at its next meeting," he said. "It will be well received by the community who want to see something happening at the hospital quickly; they don't want to see it falling to wrack and ruin."



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