Cairns Hospital's Chief Executive has responded to media reports that there is a ‘maternity crisis’ in Cairns.
Cairns and Hinterland Hospital and Health Service (CHHHS) operates a comprehensive and safe maternity and birthing service across the Far North region.
We are aware of the media interest in the long-term viability of the Cairns Private Hospital.
Media reporting has used the term ‘Maternity crisis at Cairns’ along with publishing and broadcasting photographs and vision of the public hospital when reporting on the private hospital.
The sensational language and erroneous reporting on the public hospital only serves to erode the community confidence in the delivery of our care, which is not only unwarranted but also unfair to our wonderful staff and to expectant mothers across the region.
Cairns Hospital does not have a maternity crisis. It is a well-resourced service that provides exemplary and safe care.
While obstetrics and gynaecological recruitment is a challenge in many regions, we have had no issues recruiting to our consultant positions, with the Cairns region viewed by medical staff as an attractive place to live and work.
We are very proud of the maternity and obstetric services we provide Far North Queenslanders, and expectant mothers should feel confident that they will always be in good hands at our facilities.
Each year more than 2,700 babies are safely delivered by the caring and dedicated clinicians of our service.
We have a positive relationship with our private healthcare sector partners, and Ramsay Healthcare is no exception.
If required, we will methodically and safely transition maternity services for women who were planning to birth at the private hospital to ensure they receive the best and safest care possible.
This will – of course - include employing extra staff, if needed.
Until then, please continue to support the great work of our maternity teams.
Unhelpful and uninformed commentary scares our community.
And worrying about where they will be able to give birth is the last thing we want for expectant mothers, as we well know that stress is not a welcome factor during the pregnancy journey.
Chief Executive, Cairns and Hinterland Hospital and Health Service