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Community & Business

8 December, 2021

GLAMS green light

After two years in the making, Gilgandra is set to have its first Aboriginal community-controlled medical service.

By Emily Middleton

Gilgandra Local Aboriginal Medical Service, also known as GLAMS, will open their doors on the corner of Warren Road and Station Street in February next year.

Coonamble Aboriginal Health Service (CAHS) were successful in securing funding under the Indigenous Australians Health Programme primary health care service expansion funding 2021 – 2023.

This funding meant CAHS were able to successfully undergo the establishment of GLAMS.

“There’s GP clinics and medical clinics within Gilgandra, but they aren’t Aboriginal community-controlled. Our organisation will be funded through the Indigenous Australians health program through the commonwealth, and it provides funding to Aboriginal medical services across Australia,” said CAHS chief executive officer and Gilgandra local Phil Naden.

“I am so excited that we can offer Gilgandra a service not only to the Aboriginal community but to the wider community, and bring more rural health clinicians and allied health services to Gilgandra.

“This service will mean so much to all that will access it, and we are just ecstatic that we secured this funding for Gilgandra,” said Mr Naden.

GLAMS have already secured a GP, along with a registered nurse, administration officer, and an Aboriginal health worker.

“GLAMS will have a strong focus on developing a strong local Aboriginal health workforce. For Coonamble itself, we offer our corridor of health right through to Dubbo, and we have transit people who go from community to community so they can access our services at will in any community from Coonamble through to Dubbo. We still carry their client patient records in all those organisations, so it’s not only good in that aspect, but it’s also good for the Aboriginal community because we haven’t had anything like this within Gilgandra.”

CAHS have spoken to the local Aboriginal community, and community members are eager for the doors to officially open.

“We are all champing at the bit,” said Mr Naden.

“Everyone’s asking when we’re going to open because people know how Aboriginal medical services work.”

Mr Naden is extremely grateful to those who have supported GLAMS since day one, including the council, Sue Baker, and David Neeves.

The hands behind the project include Gail Babbage of Conrad Gargett Architecture with the support of project manager Beau Ewans. The building and fitting out of the centre began on Monday, November 29, 2021.

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