Health training centre misses out

LATROBE Community Health Service has vowed to continue to fight for funding to replace its ageing Churchill facility after being knocked back by Regional Development Australia for a multi-million dollar grant.

The service sought $4.8 million dollars to build a training centre for various health professions to tackle chronic disease, mental health and dental health.

But RDA did not invite it to lodge a detailed submission for its fourth round of funding, effectively rejecting the project.

A spokesperson for the health service said it was a “disappointment”, but management would continue to pursue government grants.

The health service views the 30 year-old Churchill building as “unfit” for contemporary healthcare and rural training.

A new facility would include student consulting and treatment rooms, a physiotherapy gym and would be linked with universities and other clinics through communication technology.

The project is part of a move to attract more students to rural areas in the hope of retaining them as health workers.

The health service’s bid was beaten by expressions of interest for the Gippsland Aquatic Centre in Traralgon; Warragul’s railway precinct; and land for the expansion of the Patties factory in Bairnsdale, which will now be considered for a piece of $175 million dollars along with projects in more than 50 other regions across Australia.

A tourism project for South Gippsland’s Corner Inlet was also left out of the shortlist.