Medical precinct is just what the region needs

EDITORIAL: The new medical precinct at Hervey Bay is shaping up to be bigger than Ben-Hur.

Announcements are flying thick and fast about new services being added to the site near Hervey Bay Hospital.

With two hospitals - one public, one private - plus six GPs, physiotherapy, a chiropractor, oncology, pathology services and now radiology, it really will be the one-stop shop for health.

The last remaining block of land is on the market, and it would be surprising if it wasn't snapped up by another health-conscious developer.

It is the ultimate expression of that old cliché: "Build it and they will come."

This is more than "an opportunity" to attract the medical specialists who have turned their backs on the Fraser Coast for so long. It's reality.

The quick take-up of new facilities have shown that medicos are already queuing up for a piece of the action.

The private health industry, particularly St Stephen's, has been the biggest driver and will be a desperately needed aid to our public system.

But it's not just doctors and surgeons who are attracted by the precinct - even the staff behind the St Stephen's digital hospital construction have told their bosses they'd love to move to the area.

After calls from Cr Stuart Taylor to run broader tourism campaigns, perhaps Mayor Gerard O'Connell's suggestion to market medical tourism could be the shot in the arm our region needs.

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