Delivering emergency relief
In times of crisis, emergency funding keeps health services in rural and remote areas operating
Help when you need it most
When disaster strikes, it doesn’t discriminate based on location. This means that crucial health services in rural and remote communities, already stretched to their limits, can be heavily impacted.
It’s the single-doctor town whose clinic and equipment didn’t make it. Townspeople cut off from lifesaving health services. Or areas simply over-run with illness or injury. Unprepared and ill-equipped for it.
And it’s also the mental scars. Being on the frontline while the community you care deeply for is plunged into despair. When there’s no one to “de-brief” to, and it’s all personal.
It’s health professionals working harder than ever to save lives.
Even when their own houses, own families and own lives are on the line. In times like these, remote and rural communities need their health professionals more than ever. That’s why we’re here for them with emergency health funding.
And the process to apply is simple. We understand you are feeling overwhelmed so the application process is easy. We also have resources to learn from others that have been where you are. They share strategies to cope during this difficult time.
Relief for rural and remote doctors and their communities
The 2011 floods rendered many health services in the bush inoperative. This devastating event was the catalyst for establishing Rural Doctors Foundation.
It’s our history.
We are there in times of emergency so rural and remote communities and their doctors have the support they need.
It’s at the core of what we do and why we do it.
“It’s the type of funding doctors need at time of crisis like the devastation of the recent floods.”
In early 2022, Southeast Queensland and Northern New South Wales were hit by catastrophic floods. In these rural communities, homes, businesses, and the livelihood of many were destroyed, and tens of thousands of people were evacuated.
One GP practice that lost everything was the Keen Street Medical Practice in Lismore.
The entire surgery was inundated with water, with extensive damage to equipment, including computers and all medical records. Dr Michele Blanford is one of the doctors in this practice. As confronting as this was for Michele and her colleagues, the potential loss of medical services and urgent prescriptions was devastating for their patients.
Upon hearing the news of the tragic flooding, Rural Doctors Foundation sprang into action and pledged to help. We launched an appeal within 24 hours of the crisis. With the generosity of our supporters, we were able to provide funding to rural practices to assist in rebuilding their practice and restocking vital supplies and equipment.
Our support for Keen Street Clinic provided exam couches for use in their temporary clinic. We connected the clinic with practices not impacted and they donated additional equipment. This enabled Keen Street Medical Practice to offer consistency of medical services throughout these times for this community.
The ability to provide this support ensured consistency of healthcare in a time of need. During a webinar organised by Rural Doctors Foundation for flood affected GPs, Dr Bruce Chater observed, “showing that you are part of the community and here to stay, people will reward that…remember your patients, some patients lost livelihoods…it (the clinic) is a special place where they look after you and you look after them, it’s ‘friendships through hardships’”.
This is at the heart of what Rural Doctors Foundation passionately advocates for.
“Without an operational GP practice,
rural communities are at risk.”
Emergency relief applications must meet the following criteria:
- Applicant must live and work in a community classified as MMM3-MMM7 or be providing service to those in MMM3-MMM7 areas.
- Applicant must be a registered GP or rural generalist working within a rural GP practice
- Applicant must be able to demonstrate impact of crisis on their livelihood and ability to provide medical care to their local community
- Applicant must be able to provide referee to support their application
Applications will NOT be accepted from:
- Those those not providing service or support to MMM3-MMM7 communities.
- Consultant medical and surgical services, Allied Health, dentist, NSIS providers