Low income earners in the South-West can look forward to shorter waiting times for dental treatment with the opening of a new 10-chair dental clinic in Bunbury today.
Health Minister Jim McGinty said the upgraded clinic would accommodate an additional 1,300 patients and perform an extra 6,500 treatments a year.
“The new clinic will boost dental health in the region by providing two dentists and two dental assistants, who have already been recruited, as well as an extra four chairs,” Mr McGinty said.
“It is often very hard to attract dentists to work in the public system, but with this new modern clinic we have been able to recruit the extra staff required and there will now be seven public dentists and nine dental assistants working in Bunbury.
“In addition to the 10 dental chairs, the clinic has been fitted with the latest equipment, which will provide local people with high quality dental care.
“As a result, the annual cost of operating the clinic will rise from $1.35million to $1.8million.”
South-West MLC Adele Farina said the local community had outgrown its existing clinic and the new facility was a welcome new addition to the South West Health Campus.
“It’s good to see that the new clinic has been designed to meet the dental health needs of the region for many years to come,” Ms Farina said.
Mr McGinty said the State Government had invested heavily in reducing the time people waited for public dental care in Western Australia and Bunbury’s new clinic and staff would slash local waiting times.
“The old clinic saw unacceptable waiting times which we aim to reduce to less than 12 months in the next 18 months,” he said.
“Since 2001, six new dental clinics have opened in Joondalup, Morley, Cockburn, Halls Creek, Newman and Kununurra, while clinics in Fitzroy Crossing, Warwick, Boulder and Derby have been upgraded. A three-chair public dental clinic is currently under construction in Broome.”
Patients who hold a Health Care card, Pensioner Concession card or receive an allowance from Centrelink are eligible to receive treatment at the clinic. Public patients in the South-West can also get dental treatment at Busselton Dental Clinic and at local dental clinics through the Country Patients’ Dental Subsidy Scheme.
The clinic will be open from 8:15am to 4:30pm, Monday to Friday. Appointments can be made by calling 9791 3661.
Minister's office - 9422 3000