Canberrans in the south should have equal access to hydrotherapy, Shadow Health Minister Vicki Dunne said.
Mrs Dunne will today call on the ACT Government to keep the hydrotherapy pool at the Canberra Hospital open until a viable alternative is provided in Canberra’s south.
The ACT Government’s drastic planned closure of the popular hydrotherapy pool at the Canberra Hospital will leave patients in Canberra’s south without proper access to hydrotherapy services.
Some Labor MLAs have already misled Canberrans by falsely claiming that a new hydrotherapy pool would be built at the Stromlo Aquatic Centre. Now, Health Minister Meegan Fitzharris is forcing patients to travel to the University of Canberra Hospital to access hydrotherapy even though there is a huge wait there.
“Hydrotherapy is an important intervention that improves mobility for many people, especially the elderly. It improves people’s quality of life,” Mrs Dunne said.
“The imminent closure of the TCH hydrotherapy pool will mean that Canberrans in the south will be left behind by this Labor-Greens government.
“People in Canberra’s south need good access to hydrotherapy. This closure will mean much more restricted access to hydrotherapy for people who need it.
“It is not reasonable for the Government to expect elderly or injured people who may have difficulty with mobility to travel great distances to access this valuable service.
“Most people who use the pool at the Canberra Hospital are dealing with chronic pain, arthritis, brain injuries, stroke, surgical rehabilitation and more.
“The idea that people in physical pain must take a long walk to their bus stop, catch three buses and wait around at interchanges to access the pool in the north is cruel.
“Ms Fitzharris needs to keep the Canberra Hospital hydrotherapy pool open until she delivers a dedicated replacement with appropriate specifications in the south,” Mrs Dunne said.