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Health professionals' business functions to boost ADF capability.

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MEDIA RELEASE Peter Lindsay Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Defence PARLSEC 061/2007 Monday, 25 June 2007 EMBARGOED UNTIL 0900HRS TUESDAY 26 JUNE 2007 HEALTH PROFESSIONALS’ BUSINESS FUNCTIONS TO BOOST ADF CAPABILTY The Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Defence, Peter Lindsay MP, has called on health care professionals to consider part-time careers in the Australian Defence Force (ADF). In Brisbane, at the first of a series of Australia-wide business functions for Health Professionals, Mr Lindsay said medical, nursing and allied health personnel were greatly needed in the ADF. Mr Lindsay told representatives from major Queensland hospitals, specialist health care facilities and private practices that Health Professionals who signed up for Reserve service would gain a variety of medical experience unparalleled in civilian practice. “Terrorism in our region, disaster relief programs and Australia’s increased involvement in overseas conflicts create ‘surges’ in the ADF’s need for Health Professionals,” Mr Lindsay said. “Defence has an urgent need from the community to provide health support to humanitarian operations, disaster relief and for many other operational contingencies. “The ADF requires the capability to call upon health and medical support when we require a surge in effort. We need to be able to share the scarce health resources with the wider community. A Defence Reserves health and medical career can offer more variety, consistently, than any other employer,” Mr Lindsay said. The ‘Heath Professionals In Defence - Making a Real Difference’ business function series has been organised by the ADF in an effort to enhance capability in the crucial healthcare sector. The functions are designed to highlight the benefits of Reserve service to Health Professionals in the wider community. Medical and health professionals and the health care industry have an opportunity to be informed about the reciprocal benefits that can be gained by signing up for the Reserves. “We can provide monetary support of up to $5,600 a week to employers who release their medical staff for Reserve service,” Mr Lindsay said.

“Reserve service further develops skills that are then returned to the civilian workplace. Employees return from deployments with more focus, flexibility and adaptability that contribute to making them more rounded health and medical practitioners.

“In a strategic sense, Defence service can offer another dimension to a health and medical career that may well be an incentive for people to choose to study medicine. Reserve service can become part of an overall package that makes medicine the career of choice for school-leavers.”

Mr Lindsay added that Reserves were vital both to the ADF and the broader community.

“The health and medical world and the ADF share a great deal in common. Defence is about creating and maintaining a safe and secure environment for the people of Australia and lending assistance to other people in our region who are doing it tough.”

“I suggest that the health and medical profession has essentially similar goals.”

Media Information: Media Advisor: Niki Lyons 0418 762 307 Defence Media: (02) 6265 3343 or 0408 498 664

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