After hours clinic open

NIGHT DUTY: It's been a busy and rewarding start for the team at Jindabyne's new after hours medical clinic with more than 100 patients seen in the first three weeks. Pictured are Dr Bethan McDonald, registered nurse Julie Fehlberg and receptionist Tayla Brown.

NIGHT DUTY: It's been a busy and rewarding start for the team at Jindabyne's new after hours medical clinic with more than 100 patients seen in the first three weeks. Pictured are Dr Bethan McDonald, registered nurse Julie Fehlberg and receptionist Tayla Brown.

Jindabyne has a new winter after hours medical clinic.

Launched on June 30, Jindy Winter After Hours Medical is open seven nights and Sunday mornings in the new Superclinic, and according to Southern NSW Medicare Local CEO Kathryn Stonestreet, it's been a promising start.

"The team have had a busy time, seeing over 100 patients in the first three weeks. We'd probably like a few more people through the door on weeknights but we think that will come as word gets out," Ms Stonestreet said, adding that promotional flyers were distributed last week to accommodation and hire shops throughout Jindabyne and surrounds.

"We set up the trial after hours clinic to provide additional medical services for the Winter population and to take the load of Cooma Hospital emergency department. Based on what I'm seeing so far I believe we'll achieve that," she said.

Ms Stonestreet stressed that people should continue to see their usual GP for regular care, "and of course the ambulance and hospital remain the first point of care for emergencies."

Dr Bethan McDonald is the GP running the clinic and she reports that most of the presentations so far have been from visitors with ski injuries and local or visiting parents with sick children.

Dr McDonald is no stranger to the region, having lived and worked in Cooma while she completed components of her registrar training at the hospital. The clinic's registered nurse Julie Fehlberg also knows the mountains well. An avid skier, Julie has been a regular visitor from her Central Coast home for over 35 years and even worked for three years at Perisher Valley Medical Centre.

The team were recruited and are contracted by the Medicare Local, who have a commercial arrangement with the Jindabyne Medical Practice to use their treatment room to operate the clinic.

"We're pleased to be providing the community and visitors to the Snowy Mountains with an after hours medical service for Winter 2014. Depending on its success and funding availability, it could become a regular winter service for the town," Ms Stonestreet said.

Jindabyne After Hours Medical Clinic opens weeknights from 6.15pm until 10pm and Sundays from 9am to 1pm. The clinic is located in the Snowy River GP Superclinic at Jindabyne, use the rear entrance on Thredbo Terrace.

Walk in any time during clinic hours.

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