SOUTH Gippsland Hospital (SGH) in Foster has been crowned as the best small health service in the State at the Victorian Public Healthcare Awards held in Melbourne on Thursday November 16, 2023.
A finalist in the same category in 2022, SGH’s “sustained and improved performance” during the past year, as quoted in the Awards ceremony citation, saw the Hospital win the Premier’s Small Health Service of the Year Award for 2023.
The award was accepted by elated SGH representatives, the Board Chair David Pollard, Director of Nursing Claire Kent, and Director of Community Care Samantha Park.
While circumstance prevented SGH Chief Executive Officer Paul Greenhalgh from attending the Healthcare Awards presentation in person, he did watch the livestream from afar, and his yells of jubilation were easily imagined by the SGH team at the event itself!
“We are beyond thrilled to be recognised this way!” Mr Greenhalgh said.
“To our dedicated team of staff and volunteers, who care for the community so beautifully, thank you! This is your award,” he wrote in a heartfelt social media post after the announcement.
“To our funders, our community, and to our partners, we thank you. This is your award.
“To the Foster and Toora Medical Centre, and South Gippsland Radiology, this is your award.
“To our SGH Auxiliary, South Gippsland Community Health Foundation, and other community fundraising groups, this is your award,” the CEO’s post continued.
“SGH people live our values, day in, day out. SGH is an amazing team, and congratulations to all involved at SGH.”
Mr Greenhalgh also gave a “shout out” to SGH’s neighbour Bass Coast Health for their Bucket List Program, and applauded all of the other Victorian Public Healthcare Awards’ winners and finalists, noting that he felt “inspired by the collective and collaborative work happening throughout our [State’s] health system.”
In an open letter to the entire SGH team, Mr Greenhalgh stated that the Premier’s Small Health Service of the Year Award “is the most prestigious award a health service can receive in Victoria.
“It acknowledges you, the most amazing dedicated team of staff and volunteers, who care for the community … and recognises all your hard work and effort over many years, but especially the last 12 months.
“Congratulations again and thank you for all you do, to serve, and how you go about your work as a team,” he wrote.
“Enjoy the accolades that come your way.”
During the Victorian Public Healthcare Awards’ presentation ceremony, the citation for SGH stated that the Foster-based Hospital, in conjunction with the Community Health Centre, the Banksia Centre, and in-home support, “serves the Corner Inlet Communities by providing high quality and safe acute and community care.
“They focus on partnerships, safety, workforce capability, and community engagement to provide high-quality healthcare services.
“They have a positive workplace culture for their 200 employees and consistently strong ratings in employee and consumer satisfaction survey,” the citation reads.
“They actively promote diversity and inclusion and collaborate with various organisations to improve health and wellbeing in the community.”
Mr Greenhalgh highlighted the broad support the SGH health service receives, which ensures successful outcomes for patients and clients.
“We are fortunate to have an enormous circle of support, giving us the energy and drive to do our best in our day to day work,” he said.
“Our funders, including the State and Commonwealth Governments; our fundraisers, like the SGH Auxiliary, South Gippsland Community Health Foundation and our Murray to Moyne cycling crew; our partners, like the Foster and Toora Medical Centre, South Gippsland Radiology and surrounding health services, the Board, and especially our community,” Mr Greenhalgh said.
“With 200 engaged and committed staff, SGH equals the state in patient safety, as rated by staff, and 96 per cent of our staff would recommend a friend or relative to be treated at the health service,” he said.
“As confirmed by a 100 per cent compliance scorecard against the National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards in July 2022, our patients are in good hands.”
• Victorian Health Minister Mary-Anne Thomas is pictured with South Gippsland Hospital Director of Nursing Claire Kent, Director of Community Care Samantha Park and Board Chair David Pollard after SGH won the 2023 Victorian Public Healthcare Awards’ Premier’s Small Health Service of the Year Award.
• South Gippsland Hospital staff celebrate winning the 2023 Victorian Public Healthcare Awards’ Premier’s Small Health Service of the Year Award.