The Streaky Bay and District Medical Clinic board has won the Rural Doctors Workforce Agency Rural Community Health and Wellbeing Award at the 2018 Community Achievement Awards.
The winners were announced at the ceremony in Adelaide last Friday, with the clinic taking out the award ahead of two other finalists.
Medical clinic board chair Jonas Woolford said they were surprised to win.
“The other two finalists named were very worthy of winning, so when our name was called it was a surprise, but we were thrilled,” he said.
The board is a not-for-profit entity formed at the direction of the community to operate the Streaky Bay Medical Clinic earlier this year, after the Streaky Bay District Council had purchased the clinic.
To maintain an accredited professional medical practice, the board has employed a practice manager, a practice nurse and reception staff, along with locum doctors.
Mr Woolford said this was a reward for hard work put in since the takeover.
“The board members, who are volunteers, have contributed a lot of hours to set the governance structure up, and we’ve been getting our heads around how the clinic is run,” he said.
“We have also been doing a lot of advocacy work to get permanent doctors in.
“Things are going well and I can’t give the council enough credit, and now the board members.”
Mr Woolford said the outlook for the clinic was “promising”.
“Because of that combined advocacy work we have got quite a profile with government departments and have been getting support,” he said.
“We’ve been getting extra funding support in the provision of locum doctors from the Rural Doctors Workforce Agency, who have been great.
“They will be starting a large advertising campaign, for us and other regions looking for doctors.”
Mr Woolford said there were leads on attracting a permanent doctor to Streaky Bay, while he said the board would continue to do what they could to “provide a whole sweep of services” for the entire district.