Northern Tasmanian residents would see improved all-hours stroke care under a federal Labor plan to link regional emergency departments to a roster of the country's leading specialists.
Federal Labor health and medicare spokesperson Catherine King will announce the policy in Launceston today, to be rolled out across 41 rural and regional hospitals with money from their proposed Better Hospitals Fund should Labor win the upcoming election.
Launceston General Hospital and North West Regional Hospital would be among those locations.
The $11.9 million network would enable stroke specialists to support local clinicians by examining patients, reviewing brain imaging and providing diagnosis and treatment advice via "cutting edge telehealth technology".
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Developed by the Stroke Foundation, the proposed network has been endorsed by the Australian Stroke Coalition.
"People in regional and rural areas are almost 20 per cent more likely to suffer a stroke," Ms King said. "This is a policy that will save and improve lives."
"It is part of Labor's commitment to improving the health of the seven million Australians who live outside metropolitan areas.
"Health outcomes shouldn't be determined by your postcode - but all too often they are."
Bass Labor MHR Ross Hart said the announcement formed a key part of Labor's commitment to giving Tasmanian patients and health workers the support they need.
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