Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service chief executive Adrian Pennington (centre) announcing Hervey Bay Hospital will have three permanent intensivists at the ICU.
Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service chief executive Adrian Pennington (centre) announcing Hervey Bay Hospital will have three permanent intensivists at the ICU. Carlie Walker

ICU staff played vital role in positive result

EDITORIAL: February 7 started out as an ordinary day in the Chronicle office - until phone calls started pouring in from senior staff members at Hervey Bay's intensive care unit, telling us jobs were being threatened.

That started what I can only describe as a rollercoaster ride, for health staff, the public, myself, my colleagues and for the newspaper.

There have been claims, some of which have been spoken by Hervey Bay MP Ted Sorensen in parliament, that the information for the initial story came from the State Opposition, or from a union.

But it was staff members of the hospital who called us that day, and Mr Sorensen's comments do no justice to the people I spoke to, who were both in fear for their jobs and for the patients who would some day be treated at our hospital.

They risked their jobs just by speaking to the press.

They did so in the hopes that making the story public would lead to a better outcome for the ICU.

Those staff members should be tremendously proud of themselves because I personally feel that is exactly what it achieved.

The Queensland Nurses Union, in taking up the cause of the staff, is also to be congratulated on this result.

And the Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service needs to be included in this as well.

Thank you for listening to the concerns of your staff and the public and ensuring the intensive care unit will be intensivist- led and provide the best quality care for the people of this region.

It is this paper's job to report on the news of the Fraser Coast, to fight for this region and to give a voice to people who don't always have one.

You'll forgive me for being proud of being part of that.



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