Maryborough GP's all for the charm
MARK Lawry knew he needed a change, the "dustbowl" of Karratha, heart of Western Australia's mining lands, was no place to raise his growing family.
Sure, he had a secure job with Rio Tinto as the mining giant's local GP in the Pilbara region but the lifestyle was simply not meeting expectations.
His arrival in Maryborough to open the heritage city's newest medical clinic could not have come at a better time for locals, who are currently in the midst of a severe shortage of doctors.
Dr Lawry said while the need for more practitioners had influenced his decision in some way, the overriding factors had been the city's charm, character and the lifestyle it would offer his family.
"I like Maryborough, it's got character and charm about it, I like the old buildings...Maryborough, really, I find an intriguing place," Dr Lawry said.
"There is a shortage of doctors and it suited - I like the river and I like being able to live on some acreage, rents are reasonable, my kids love it and there are good schools."
The committed family man's Bazaar St Medical Centre is due to open in the next few weeks and will offer bulk billing to all clients with a Medicare card.
Dr Lawry said the decision to offer the service to all patients came after he noticed many practices in the Fraser Coast allowed only those on government support payments to access the option.