Ballina bowlo to host free respiratory clinic
A NEW respiratory clinic will open in Ballina this Wednesday.
The new health service will be established at the Cherry Street Sports Club.
The fee-free, GP-led respiratory clinic is part of the Australian Government's $2.4 billion health package in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
The clinic will assess people with respiratory symptoms and, where appropriate, undertake testing to diagnose respiratory cases, including COVID-19, influenza and pneumonia.
Results will be available within one day.
The Ballina Respiratory Clinic will be open from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.
The clinic will complement NSW Health's existing COVID-19 fever clinics at Tweed Heads, Byron Bay, Lismore, Grafton, Coffs Harbour, Kempsey and Port Macquarie.
The North Coast Primary Health Network (NCPHN)'s CEO, Julie Sturgess, said the clinic was a great example of local collaboration to support the community's well-being.
"The clinic will provide the opportunity for people to undergo assessment and testing in a safe environment," Ms Sturgess said.
"It will support local health care services - taking the pressure off hospitals and general practices by providing dedicated treatment to people with mild to moderate symptoms of fever or sore throat, cough, fatigue or shortness of breath.
"I encourage anyone in our community experiencing these symptoms to book an appointment."
Dr Ross Wylie, from the Ballina Family Medical Centre, is one of the GPs who will operate the clinic.
"It will get COVID-19 swab results back to people via their usual GP really efficiently and is using our stock of personal protection equipment in the most efficient way," he said.
Dr Tonya Coren, principal GP of Cape Byron Medical Centre, is leading the clinical team co-ordinating the respiratory clinic.
Dr Coren said the collaboration between healthcare professionals and organisations such as the Cherry Street Sports Club and NCPHN was the most effective way to achieve positive outcomes for the community in response to COVID-19 and beyond.
"It has been such a pleasure working together to establish the respiratory clinic in Ballina," Dr Coren said.
"It's a great initiative from the Australian Government and we are proud to be a part of it."
The clinic has been established with the highest standards of infection prevention and control and quality assurance.
It has private access through a purpose-built section off the back deck of the Cherry Street Sports Club.