THOROUGH investigation into current residential drug rehabilitation facilities
statewide, and the services they offer, was a key action to come out of the
Bundaberg Region Community Ice Forum Working Party meeting this week.
on Tuesday 4 October, it was attended by Bundaberg Mayor Jack Dempsey, Federal
Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt and State Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett.
Member for Bundaberg Leanne Donaldson was an apology.
meeting also included Clinical Director of the Wide Bay Health & Hospital Service
Alcohol and Other Drugs (WBHHS AOD) service Dr Kees Nydam, Primary Health
Network General Manager for the Wide Bay region Tracey Warhurst and PHN AOD
Coordinator for Wide Bay Marie Walshe, head of IWC’s AOD program Lee Hammond,
Acting CEO of Bridges Health & Community Care Mark Fog, Bundaberg
Councillors Helen Blackburn and Peter Heuser, and representatives of the
Queensland Police Service. The meeting was called by co-facilitator of the 2
June Community Ice Forum Janette Young, of IWC.
was agreed by the group that the investigation into the residential facilities
currently in operation will be undertaken by PHN. The aim would be to identify
as much detail around operations, costings, motivation, outcomes, and to look
for gaps in services from the perspective of AOD clients in need of treatment,”
said Ms Young.
also was identified that there was insufficient data currently to hand to
identify the true area of need around AOD, and in particular drug
rehabilitation and treatment, in the Bundaberg region. The Working Party agreed
that further data collation utilising a range of channels – including police,
AOD services, frontline provider services around health and community – was
with the Queensland Network of Drug and Alcohol Agencies (QNADA), to take a
consistent statewide approach to appropriate data collation, was seen by the
group as a good way to approach this.”
has recently established a Strategic Collaborative
Drug and Alcohol Working Group for the Wide Bay - of which IWC, Bridges and WBHHS
are members - which also has identified the need to collate cross-community
data around AOD in the region. The next meeting of the PHN Working Group is on
"IWC has offered as a
potential site the current IWC Home Farm at Calavos, formerly the Yaamba Drug
and Alcohol Hostel for Men, but made clear to the Community Ice Forum Working
Party that it was not the only option on the table. It also made clear that IWC
had driven the forum only as a community service to ensure the voice of the
grassroots in Bundaberg was heard as strategies around AOD were developed at a
Wide Bay and State level, feeding into the Federal focus around Ice and other
IWC and Bundaberg
Regional Council proposed an alternative site to the Working Group that could
be considered for a possible rehabilitation facility in Bundaberg region, and
it was agreed to set up a visit to investigate the potential.
"Bundaberg Mayor Jack Dempsey, who played an
active role in the discussion at the meeting, emphasised that
whole-of-community support and cooperation would be important as and when
funding was sought for a rehabilitation facility in Bundaberg region. A clear
understanding of AOD in the region, and its direct social and health impacts,
would also be important, as would a collaborative plan around delivery of
solutions along with an outline of cost benefits,” said Ms Young.
"This is something the whole community can
agree with, and work towards. To have achieved this next step is a credit to the
strength of community spirit and purpose that drives our region.
is pleased to have been able to use its proven track record as an
outcome-focused, community-run organisation to lead the way to raise the
awareness of drug and alcohol issues in Bundaberg region, including important
infrastructure and resources, with the aim of better assisting our clients and
the whole community on a successful journey to recovery.”
WORKING TOGETHER: Pictured from left before the first
Bundaberg Region Community Ice Forum Working Party into a potential residential
rehabilitation facility are (back row) Bundaberg Councillor Peter Heuser, IWC
Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD) program manager Lee Hammond, Const Tim Clark of
Queensland Police Service (QPS), Dr Kees Nydam of Wide Bay Health and Hospital
Service AOD service, Bundaberg Region Community Ice Forum co-facilitator
Janette Young of IWC. Front row: IWC Executive Leanne Connors, Acting CEO of
Bridges Mark Fog, Marie Walshe of Primary Health Network (PHN), Kyrra Wilson of
QPS, PHN Wide Bay Manager Tracey Warhurst, Bundaberg Councillor Helen
Blackburn, Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt, State Member for Burnett
Stephen Bennett. Bundaberg Mayor Jack Dempsey attended the meeting and played
an active role in discussion, but was a later arrival. Member for Bundaberg
Leanne Donaldson was an apology. The meeting was held at the IWC Home Farm,
formerly the Yaamba Drug and Alcohol Hostel for Men at Calavos.