Beaudesert Maternity up for National Award

Celebrating the reopening of maternity services in 2014 after a hard-fought community battle. Photo by Dr Michael Rice
Celebrating the reopening of maternity services in 2014 after a hard-fought community battle. Photo by Dr Michael Rice

Beaudesert’s renowned maternity unit has received national recognition as a finalist in the 2022 Hesta Australian Nursing and Midwifery Awards.

The Beaudesert Hospital unit, which reopened in 2014 after a hard-fought community battle, is considered the envy of rural communities across the state.

Beaudesert maternity is being recognised for improving the health and wellbeing of rural women and babies by providing high-quality maternity services to locals, including First Nations mothers in Beaudesert’s strong Mununjali community.

“The service has enhanced healthcare for local women and babies, including expanding its Midwifery Group Practice, which provides individualised continuity of care during pregnancy, labour and birth, and in the provision of postnatal care,” Hesta’s statement read.

“Beaudesert Hospital Maternity has also increased access to culturally appropriate midwifery and healthcare to First Nations mothers… working to further enhance cultural appropriate care in the future through a Birthing in Our Community (BiOC) model of care.”

Local GP Dr Michael Rice, a staunch advocate of the local service, welcomed the news.

“I’m thrilled and not a bit surprised that Beaudesert maternity is a finalist in this award, because for decades we’ve had a culture of caring for the community,” he said.

“The proof is in Queensland Health’s patient experience surveys, where Beauy maternity has been a recurrent top provider of care that families love. Small teams, close to home, looking after local families and not just numbers; that’s what’s special.”

Rural Doctors Association of Queensland General Manager Marg Moss, another fierce advocate, extended her congratulations.

“Re-establishing birthing for Beaudesert has been the envy of every town in Queensland that has had to endure the burden of maternity closure. RDAQ is still fighting for similar success all over Queensland,” she said.

“It is great to see that the Beaudesert team’s commitment to care has been recognised.”

Beaudesert Maternity hopes to use the prize money to introduce a waterbirth option and developing an onsite lactation clinic. Winners will be announced 19 May.

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Small town newspaper Editor, journo, social media manager and tea lady.