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Save the Centre for Disability Health at Modbury Hospital

This petition had 1,231 supporters


To Minister Piccolo (SA Minister for Disabilities) and Minister Snelling (SA Minister for Health),

Being chemically sedated. Left untreated. Having their right to access quality health care denied. This is the almost certain future for people with disabilities with complex health needs if you shut the Centre for Disability Health, (CDH) Modbury.

In the 1990s, a group of parents and medical professionals fought to get this Centre going, because they saw that people with intellectual and communication related disabilities were not being cared for by General Practitioners.  The need for a specialised service to promote good health for people with disabilities was clear because:

•       There was no GP training in the particular needs of people with disabilities, especially those who communicate in ways other than speaking

•       Regular length GP appointments are not long enough to explain complex medical issues, especially when a patient may not be able to communicate verbally or quickly

•       Disability support workers do not always follow through on advice from doctors, by arranging follow up appointments etc.

•       Clients are sometimes assisted to attend appointments by support workers who are not familiar with their history and needs

Now, the Government says the CDH is closing because of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and related reform.  But the NDIS is still years away from full rollout in South Australia, and even when it is fully implemented, it is not designed to fund and provide healthcare.  Despite the fact that CDH has gained more than one thousand new clients in the last 18 months, staff at the CDH have been told to “transition” their current clients to “other services”.   But transition plans are a pointless exercise because, while mainstream services remain inaccessible due to lack of knowledge and time, there is simply nowhere for people to transition to.

Please, Ministers, listen to these members of your community, your electors who depend on you to meet the holistic healthcare needs, and human rights, of people with disabilities.  Do not close The Centre for Disability Health!                   

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