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Byron Shire
March 31, 2023

Struggling health sector

Latest News

Is polluting a lake in a national park to support new housing ok?

From Byron Bay to Evans Head to Casino the questions about how we deal with what is politely termed ‘effluent’, and how that may or may not destroy our local environment, demand real and urgent answers.

Other News

Cooler year ‘reprieve’ but trends continue, says Australia’s Environment Report

The latest annual report on the state of Australia’s environment has suggested that 2022’s higher than average rainfall could provide “a reprieve” for Australia and better enable it to cope with the forecast 2023 dry spell.

And Still I Sing

Ballina Region for Refugees is holding a fundraising screening at Byron Theatre next Wednesday to raise urgently needed funds for their community resettlement program. The film is And Still I Sing, an extraordinary documentary by Afghan filmmaker, Fazila Amiri. 

Mandy Nolan’s Soapbox: A fluid God

Why is the ultra-right targeting trans kids? Opportunistic neo-Nazis are using transphobia as their PR exercise. Like abortion, trans issues, and in particular issues around schools and the rights of trans kids, are emotionally charged. For those who have chosen bigotry and fear over acceptance and inclusion, polarised viewpoints create ignition points for hate and violence.

Regulation essential

I would like to sincerely thank the nearly 6,000 people in our community who signed the ‘Byron Deserves Balance’...

Helping our elders on April Falls Day

April Falls Month is an annual campaign to raise awareness about the impact of falls and to promote the latest best practice fall prevention strategies. The overall campaign goal is to get active and improve balance for fall prevention.

Tamara Smith returned to Ballina’s Greens seat

Last night a packed Suffolk Park Hotel exploded with cheers at around 8pm when the ABC broadcast computer popped up a Green result for Ballina and the return of Tamara Smith to the seat she has held for the last eight years.

Regarding your article NSW Labor states its position on struggling health sector (8 February). Nurses and midwives across NSW are grateful that the NSW Labor and Greens political parties acknowledge the need to increase public sector wages, in order to stem the haemorrhage of staff to other states offering better pay and conditions. However, it is not the only reason there is a health professional staffing crisis in NSW, particularly in the nursing and midwifery professions.

It must be clarified that, unlike the NSW Greens, who support the NSW Nurses & Midwives (NSWNMA) campaign for nurse/midwife-to-patient ratios across NSW in all areas, the NSW Labor party remains resistant to the adoption of the nurse/midwife-to-patient ratio terminology. Instead, they persist in calling for shift-by-shift safe staffing levels, which is confusing for health professionals and the voting general public alike. 

They have also not committed to ratios in many areas such as paediatrics and community health. This is nearsighted, given that improved community health staffing, whether it is for physical or mental health, adult or paediatric, means that many potential admissions to overburdened public hospitals will be prevented. 

By the provision of primary health care, more patients will be cared for at home, a saving on both hospital beds and health budgets leading to an improvement in patient wellbeing.

Elizabeth McCall, Byron Bay

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