THE health forum that was to be held last night was postponed due to an imminent announcement of resource upgrades at Manning Hospital.
Manning Business Chamber vice president and city councillor, Alan Tickle, said that the Economic Development Partnership Board (EDPB) believes that having a health forum to bring together health professionals and community leaders, would enable the key stakeholders, that is the people of the Manning Valley and surrounding council areas, to have clear understanding of the health service needs of the area.
After the date was chosen, the chamber has been informed that there will be a visit from the NSW health minister, Gillian Skinner this week and an announcement is expected concerning Manning Hospital.
"The advice received from some health professionals was that we should wait to digest what is proposed and then schedule a forum at a later date, so that is what will happen," Cr Tickle said
The chamber and the EDPB have been concerned over the shift in resourcing from the Manning Hospital and recognises how crucial a well resourced public hospital is to a community that is acknowledged as having a disproportionate number of lower income earners.
The EDPB also maintains that having a strong health and education sector adds interest to people contemplating moving to the area.
Two years ago, the mayors of Greater Taree City, Great Lakes and Gloucester council jointly called for a clinical services plan to be prepared as a matter of urgency for the Manning Hospital.
It was said at that time that the plan was necessary to enable a realistic consideration for funding by the State Government.