To: The Hon Gladys Berejiklian, NSW Premier

End the crisis in rural and remote health

End the crisis in rural and remote health

1. Engage with rural and remote people in decision-making, the absence of a clear strategy for rural health and accountability for rural health outcomes
2. Recruit and retain doctors, nurses, mental health and allied health staff
3. Reform our rural and remote health and hospital system so that it is responsive to the needs of individual communities and has the resources to address the causes and consequences of poor health.

Why is this important?

NSW rural and remote health and hospital services are in crisis due to a lack of engagement with rural and remote people in decision-making, the absence of a clear strategy for rural health and accountability for rural health outcomes, and poorly targeted investments in recruiting and retaining doctors, nurses, mental health and allied health staff by the NSW Government. Rural and remote communities need the help of the NSW Government to fundamentally reform our rural and remote health and hospital system so that it is responsive to the needs of individual communities and has the resources to address the causes and consequences of poor health.

People who live in rural and remote NSW have a higher rate of chronic diseases compared to people living in regional and metropolitan cities, will die up to 11 years earlier and have inadequate access to primary health care and hospital services. The median age of death of rural and remote people is going backwards, while more than 3,000 rural and remote residents in NSW die unnecessarily every year from preventable causes. Rural and remote people need a health and hospital system that is designed around their unique needs and circumstances. Metropolitan approaches has failed to deliver the right care in the right place and at the right time for rural and remote communities. Building the right health system will help is to save more rural and remote residents from ill-health, and premature and avoidable death. Rural and remote residents produce the fresh food we eat and generate more than 65% of the nation's export wealth. Access to appropriate health care is not just a human right, it is critical for the future of jobs and economic development in our country.

How it will be delivered

We will organise an event to hand over the signatures to the Premier and Minister for Health.