Hospital puts out the welcome mat for open day tours
GLADSTONE Hospital laid out the welcome mat for the public when it hosted its first open day in a few years on Sunday.
Families and Gladstone's health dignitaries spent the morning touring the facility and learning more about the changes to hospital over the past 12 months.
Director of Medical Services Dr Nicki Murdock led one of the tours, showing off the hospital's dialysis services, children's, maternity and chemotherapy wards.
Visible performance charts were plastered across the walls of some wards, to boost staff morale and to remind staff of their personal achievements.
Gladstone's indigenous community also welcomed the launch of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander flags to be displayed on newly-erected flag poles at the Park St entrance to the hospital.
Acting chief executive Rod Boddice said the flag-raising ceremony was a positive for Gladstone's indigenous community.
Gladstone aboriginal community member Julia Ingra said the new flags at the hospital were a step toward closing the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous communities.
"Everyone needs to see a doctor and some people (in the indigenous communities) leave things to the last minute," she said.
Ms Ingra said there needed to be more support offered in the public hospital system.
It comes as Barbara Hatfield was last week named the hospital's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Staff Member of the Year for her role as a mentor and role model to the indigenous community.
Hospital tour an eye-opener
A TRIP to the hospital isn't always on good terms, but the O'Flanagan family bucked the trend on Sunday.
Anne O'Flanagan and children Avril, 10, and Colby, 8, made the most of the Gladstone Hospital public tours during the open day.
Anne said she was lucky not to have been through the Gladstone hospital system and was interested to see how things worked behind the scenes.
"I thought it would be interesting to come along," she said. "I was keen to see how the staff worked and what services the hospital had to offer."
Anne said she'd heard of the stigma associated with Gladstone Hospital, but said that wasn't one of the reasons for coming along to the open day.
"I think the staff work really hard. I'm happy with the work that they provide," she said.
Young Colby said he was excited about the experience.
"I'm looking forward to seeing where they do operations," he said.
The tours were held throughout the day, with Gladstone's health dignitaries taking a tour of the facility as well.
Guests visited the childrens ward, maternity, chemotherapy and renal facillities.