REGION - The Lake Bolac and Elmhurst Bush Nursing Centres are concerned State Government funding announced last week for bush nursing centres will not cover their costs for the year.
While welcoming the funding, neither centre believes it will address the increase in wage and service provision costs over the coming year.
Lake Bolac Bush Nursing Centre manager, Jenny Holdsworth said the 1.4 per cent increase in funds for 2012/13 fell well short of the CPI and wage cost increases faced by bush nursing centres.
"A major reason for the operational and wages cost increases has been the need to match the Government-funded public nurse wages increases," she said.
"Although the funding does not match the cost increases faced by bush nursing centres, the Lake Bolac Bush Nursing Centre is not contemplating any service cuts at present."
Minister for Health, David Davis announced the funding allocations for the State's public hospitals and health services, including bush nursing centres, last Friday.
He said the budget bottom lines of Victoria's public hospitals had increased over last year and that the Government was providing $5.48 million to bush nursing hospitals and centres as part of the boost to help them provide a range of services to public patients - an increase of two per cent from 2011/12.
Mr Davis said the $5.48 million provided by the Government to bush nursing hospitals and centres - mainly private or community-owned facilities funded through private health insurance - would help provide services to public patients.
The Lake Bolac Bush Nursing Centre will receive $359,000 in Victorian Government hospital funding, up by $5000, or 1.4 per cent, on the funding allocation for 2011/12.
The recurrent funding for the Lake Bolac Bush Nursing Centre has increased by $17,000, or 4.9 per cent, since the 2010/11 year, when the Baillieu Government came into office.
Elmhurst Bush Nursing Centre will receive $271,000 in Victorian Government hospital funding, up by $6000, or 2.4 per cent, on the funding allocation for 2011/12.
The recurrent funding for the Elmhurst Bush Nursing Centre has increased by $18,000, or 7.2 per cent, since the 2010/11 year.
Elmhurst Bush Nursing Centre manager, Sue Young acknowledged that the 2.4 per cent increase would assist in addressing the increased cost in service delivery related to medical and general supplies, plus EBA wage outcomes.
"While this small increase is welcome, the recurrent funding will once again fall short of the growing cost in service provision and staff expenses," she said.
"Elmhurst Bush Nursing Centre has actively lobbied for extra funding from local Members and through Department of Health representatives during the last 12 to 18 months, to endeavour to obtain extra operational funding to align with the increasing client numbers and services provided."
Ms Young said the centre looked forward to reporting on its financial and service performance to the community at its annual general meeting, to be held on September 12, 2012.
When making the announcement, Mr Davis said hospital funding had increased by $601.66 million, or eight per cent, since 2010/11 when the Baillieu Government came into office.
The bottom line operating budgets exclude capital funding and non-recurrent expenditure.
"Despite severe financial challenges, which include Commonwealth's cuts to Victoria's GST share and now the introduction of the carbon tax, the State Government funding will help to build a healthier Victoria and provide greater transparency," Mr Davis said.
"The funding boost will enable our hospitals to continue to treat record patient numbers.
"This will put strategic long-term health and hospital services across the State on a firmer and more rational footing."