The State Government will inject $9million into a new clinic at Princess Margaret Hospital to treat more than 1,200 children with Cerebral Palsy.
Health Minister Jim McGinty said the new Cerebral Palsy Mobility Service (CPMS) would provide a comprehensive, world’s best practice treatment for children and included a dedicated procedure room for Botox therapy.
“Cerebral Palsy is the most common physical disability in childhood,” Mr McGinty said.
“Every year, about 70 Western Australian children are born with this disability and there are 1,200 children with Cerebral Palsy needing treatment at any one time.”
The Minister said he became aware that the current Cerebral Palsy service at PMH could not cope with demand when it was raised publicly nearly two months ago.
“There were delays in treating these children and some families had been forced to travel east because they could not wait any longer,” he said.
“That is just unacceptable.
“With the advances in medicine, particularly the use of Botox, the State Government recognised the need to provide a comprehensive service for children with Cerebral Palsy.”
Mr McGinty said Botox injections were proving effective in reducing spasticity, improving mobility and strengthening muscles, reducing musculoskeletal deformity and reducing the need for orthopaedic surgery.
In addition to a dedicated Botox theatre, the new service will provide new medical procedures to treat children with severe spasticity.
An extra 15 medical staff including orthopaedic surgeons, nurses and therapists will also be employed to screen, treat and manage children with Cerebral Palsy.
The Minister said the $9million for the CPMS would be allocated over four years, with $2.1million in 2005-06 rising to $2.41million in 2008-09.
Last month, the State Government committed $222million to relocate PMH from its Subiaco site to the Wellington Street Campus (North Block) of Royal Perth Hospital.
The North Block will be totally redeveloped once Royal Perth Hospital's clinical services are relocated to the Fiona Stanley Hospital in 2011.
The redevelopment includes a new emergency department, a specialised paediatric intensive care unit, neonatal nursery and 10 refurbished operating theatres for paediatric surgery.
Minister's office: 9220 5000