Annual Report 2020-21 Limestone Coast Local Health Network

To: Hon Stephen Wade MLC

Minister for Health and Wellbeing

This annual report will be presented to Parliament to meet the statutory reporting requirements of the Public Sector Act 2009, the Public Finance and Audit Act 1987 and the Health Care Act 2008, and the requirements of Premier and Cabinet Circular PC013 Annual Reporting.

This report is verified to be accurate for the purposes of annual reporting to the Parliament of South Australia.

Submitted on behalf of the Limestone Coast Local Health Network Inc. by:

Grant King
Governing Board Chair
Limestone Coast Local Health Network
Signed: 22/09/2021

Ngaire Buchanan
Chief Executive Officer
Limestone Coast Local Health Network
Signed: 22/09/2021

From the Governing Board Chair

I am pleased to present the Limestone Coast Local Health Network 2020-2021 Annual Report which follows completion of the second year of regional governance of our public health system.

Reform of the Health Care Act provides the opportunity for regions to be more directly responsible for health care service delivery and planning for the future.

This Annual Report provides statistical details of the health services provided across the Limestone Coast Region and is a reflection of the achievements of our entire frontline and administrative teams, in meeting the health care needs of our community. I commend the report to you.

We have faced a number of challenges this past year, not the least being the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Uncertainty around cross-border access has from time to time, made it very difficult for a number of our staff who reside in Western Victoria. That challenge and the higher order issue of workforce availability and attraction across a range of disciplines, continues to be a high priority for our region and many others across Australia.

Increasing demand for health services drives activity numbers and that drives the need for strong, experienced management and strategic thinking right across the organisation. Mental Health and Aged Care are two examples of areas in our health system that require extra planning and effort to meet community expectations.

It is pleasing to report that our Strategic Plan 2021-2025 has been developed and contains a number of high-level objectives which will drive much of our work over the next two to three years. Challenges mentioned above will be addressed and we will continue to innovate our health care services to maximise opportunities for growth and the introduction of new models of care across the region.

The Board is also committed to implementing our Consumer, Carer & Community and our Clinician & Staff engagement strategies, with both plans seeking to engage an consult in a way that will support, refine and add value to the way we deliver services into the future.

We will also continue to collaborate more broadly with the other Local Health Networks across South Australia and with the Rural Support Service, to focus on system wide improvements, particularly in areas of new technology and the phasing out of inherited systems and associated risks.

I take this opportunity to thank my fellow Board Members and acknowledge the contribution that they have made to our governance responsibilities and planning towards achieving our strategic objectives. I also want to thank each and every one of our Limestone Coast Local Health Network employees and contracted personnel, for the commitment and dedication shown towards providing our community with a high level of health care service.

I would also like to acknowledge the support of Minister Stephen Wade and the Department for Health and Wellbeing, during the past twelve months.

Grant King
Governing Board Chair
Limestone Coast Local Health Network

From the Chief Executive

This year we have continued to deliver high quality and person-centred health services that meet the needs of our community, despite the immense challenges presented to our Local Health Network due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Our performance highlights include our work to achieve timely admissions for elective surgery and the continued achievement and improvement in Emergency Department ‘Seen on Time’ triage categories. We continue work to provide services as close to home as safely possible, with the COVID-19 pandemic seeing an increased uptake in the use of telehealth services across the region and with our regional model supporting the delivery of specialist care in the community including specialist surgery and cancer care services.

We continue to monitor key population trends in our region, including an ageing population, areas of socio-economic disadvantage, complex chronic healthcare needs and mental health. This has been supported by the implementation of the Service Plan in Millicent and the development of our Service Plan for Mount Gambier and the surrounding district. The commitment to providing care for the unique needs of those accessing healthcare across the Limestone Coast will be further supported by the commencement of Service Planning for Bordertown, Keith, Kingston and Naracoorte in 2021-22.

Supporting our commitment to the delivery of services as close to home as safely possible for the Limestone Coast community, the LCLHN has engaged consultants to commence design options for an Ambulatory Care centre in Mount Gambier. This centre is designed to deliver a range of care from preventative and primary care, through to specialist services and tertiary level care in an outpatient setting. We look forward to progressing this important work to reduce hospital presentations.

This year we formalised our partnership with the Pangula Mannamurna Aboriginal Corporation, signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in November 2020, held our first Cultural Immersion training for the executive team and implemented our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), demonstrating our commitment to ensuring our services meet the needs of our local Aboriginal populations.

The continued efforts of the LCLHN Incident Management Team (IMT) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the activation of the Vaccination Program in March 2021, has ensured the safety of the Limestone Coast community and the highest vaccination uptake in the State of South Australia.

These and other achievements listed throughout this report have only been possible through the hard work and commitment of our people, who are undoubtedly our greatest asset.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank our dedicated employees across acute, residential aged care, community health and mental health services. I remain ever confident that the Limestone Coast community is in safe hands.

Ngaire Buchanan
Chief Executive
Limestone Coast Local Health Network