Christmas without a doctor at Grafton Base Hospital

THERE will be no doctor in the emergency department of Grafton Base Hospital on Christmas Day.

This is despite the yearly swell in population covered by the hospital during the holiday season.

According to a Northern Rivers Area Health Service (NRAHS) spokesperson, there will be medical cover at the hospital but the locum doctor has withdrawn. "We have asked a medical locum agency to urgently contact other clinicians who could provide cover, and we are confident this will be achieved," the spokesperson said.

Member for Clarence Steve Cansdell said services in Lismore received more attention at the expense of hospitals in the Clarence Valley.

"I think it's laziness (by the NRAHS) because they just look after their own little turf club up there ... and until the Clarence has a local health body we'll just continue to miss out," he said.

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