New plastic surgery service improves patient access to local care

A female patient sits in a bed with a male doctor and female nurse standing beside her.
One of Rockingham General Hospital’s first plastic surgery patients Suzanne Treasure with SMHS Head of Plastic Surgery Professor Colin Song and plastic surgery clinical nurse specialist Jemma Spence.
February 6, 2019

Patients in the Rockingham Peel region are set to benefit from a new plastic surgery service which has been established at Rockingham General Hospital (RGH).

RGH now provides low to medium complexity plastic surgery services for patients in the South Metropolitan Health Service (SMHS) catchment, including a significant number of skin cancer surgeries.

The new service is in partnership with Fiona Stanley Fremantle Hospitals Group which will continue to undertake higher acuity cases.

SMHS Head of Plastic Surgery Professor Colin Song said the new service was a natural progression after looking at patient demographics.

“Between 35 to 40 per cent of these types of patients are coming from this area, so it made sense to provide a more local service,” Professor Song said.

“It is always beneficial for patients when they can be seen close to home. It reduces stress and anxiety, which can lead to a better recovery and greater satisfaction.

“Our new service exemplifies the patient-centric model mantra – where we bring the service to the patient, rather than the patients to us.”

The new service will help provide more timely access to care for patients across the catchment area by reducing the overall SMHS plastic surgery outpatient and elective surgery waitlists, particularly for urgent skin cancers.

As part of the service, a plastics and wound care specialist nurse will provide advice to hospital staff on plastics patients and other patients requiring wound management.

The plastic surgery service commenced on Thursday 31 January 2019 and is anticipated to complete more than 500 surgeries in its first year. 

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