The Boards of Management of Lorne Community Hospital and Otway Health have now formally committed to exploring further opportunities for sharing of resources and potential partnership in new health initiatives.

This would build on a strong recent history of successful collaboration between the health services such as our current shared CEO, social worker, exercise physiology, project coordinator, post-bushfire mental health services in Wye River and Separation Creek, and common involvement in a grant to support chronic illness.

The communities of Lorne and Apollo Bay belong to isolated coastal villages on a busy tourist route with extreme seasonal population shifts and as a result, face similar challenges relating to accessibility and range of services available, and sustainability of highly qualified staff.

Lorne Community Hospital and Otway Health CEO, Kate Gillan said, “Our communities are responding to current challenges faced by regional and rural health services, so it’s important to ensure we build a strong health system for the future.”

The Boards are optimistic that a considered review of the two health services will reveal opportunities for future-proofing services through robust sustainability initiatives, and an increased range of services available to both communities.

An independent report will be used to ensure the review is objective in identifying opportunities and making recommendations.

Both Boards are committed to transparency and openness with their communities and if the review is encouraging about areas of collaboration then the input of both communities will be sought.