If elected to Government in March, State Liberal Leader Steven Marshall has committed to working with the Federal Government to ensure a permanent renal dialysis unit, with the capacity for four renal dialysis chairs, is built at Pukatja/Ernabella on the APY Lands.

The Weatherill Labor Government currently pays the Northern Territory Government for South Australian patients’ dialysis treatments administered in Alice Springs.

Under the State Liberals’ policy, ongoing costs for renal dialysis treatment would be redirected to Aboriginal organisation, Western Desert Dialysis.

Western Desert Dialysis is a non-profit organisation highly experienced in remote service delivery and currently operate six regional dialysis clinics in the Northern Territory and Western Australia.

The Federal Government has already earmarked $1.8 million of capital funding to build the Pukatja renal dialysis centre and associated staff housing.

Western Desert Dialysis would run the centre and provide the necessary staff.

“The State Liberals are committed to working with the Federal Government, Western Desert Dialysis, local communities and the NPY Women’s Council to make the Pukatja renal dialysis centre a reality,” said Mr Marshall.

“Aboriginal South Australians are significantly more likely to suffer from renal kidney failure than non-Aboriginal people.

“Our commitment will ensure that Aboriginal elders from the Lands are able to stay close to their communities, providing support for their families and cultural guidance for young people.

“This will also free up renal dialysis chairs at metropolitan hospitals for local patients.

“A Marshall Liberal Government will provide better health outcomes for Aboriginal South Australians suffering from renal kidney failure.”