A local Imaging centre is calling on the Department of Health to consider locals who could be left out of pocket if its licence submission isn’t assessed by the time the machine is in use.
According to Alpenglow Australia’s Operations Manager at Young Diagnostic Imaging, Chris Dawe, the Magnetic Resonance Imaging scanner will be installed in the new building in Young later next year but unless a licence is granted to the company by the Department of Health for the MRI “all MRI services will be out of pocket for the patient".
“If we can get a partial or full licence all MRI services on our machine will be partially or fully funded by Medicare,” she said.
“This means there will be no out of pocket costs for the patient and they can be bulk billed through Medicare.”
READ ALSO: Candidates quizzed at public forum in Young
Mrs Dawe’s hope is that the company will receive a full licence in the next round of licences to be issued across the country.
The Department of Health opened up an application to release 20 MRI licences throughout Australia over the coming weeks.
“We have received many letters of support from local and state politicians, local doctors and health professionals, and patients, all of which was included in the application,” she said.
Mrs Dawe hopes that with Alpenglow providing the machine, the Federal Government can step in and help locals who currently are travelling as far as Canberra, Orange and Sydney to use similar facilities.
“Young Diagnostic Imaging will supply the machine but we need Federal Government support and Health Minister Greg Hunt to recognise the need for funded MRI services in and around Young,” Mrs Dawe said.
“It is not acceptable that our community is currently required to travel two hours for this same service.”
READ ALSO: Burrangong prevails in Division Two decider
Hilltops council mayor Brian Ingram has shown his support of the application.
"It's mainly about the travel people are doing at the moment, and the strain that puts on the person seeking medical assistance, and for some, their employer as well."
Minister for the Department of Health Greg Hunt has been contacted by the Young Witness Editorial team for a comment on the matter.