Local Health Services
IMPORTANT: In an emergency your first act should be to call 000.
General medical problems
Due to a shortage of doctors in country Victoria, most local clinics will not see new patients.
For this reason we will have a doctor available to attendees, the details of which will be in the conference handbook. There is also a doctor on campus between 9:15am and 3:00pm Monday to Thursday.
If you wish to see a GP on your own your best bet is the Eureka Medical Centre. Be prepared to wait for up to four hours, with a typical waiting time of 1-2 hours. And while they are open until 10pm, due to the wait times they will generally start turning people away after 6-7pm in the evening. The wait times at the emergency department are typically worse than this for non-emergency cases.
If you're not sure how serious your problem is, you can call the Nurse On-Call service on 1300 60 60 24 and they can advise you whether and when to seek a doctor's help with your symptoms.
Urgent medical problems
Call 000 for an ambulance if needed. Otherwise attend the Emergency department, Ballarat Base Hospital, Drummond Street, Ballarat.
Note that the hospital will triage you and see urgent patients first, so non-emergency situations may not be seen for a very long time.
If visiting Melbourne, you will find it much better serviced. Many medical centres will accept new patients (although without a prior appointment a 1 to 2 hour wait may also be necessary) and there is also an after-hours locum service that comes to you After Hours GP (6pm to 8am Mon to Fri, 12 noon Saturday to 8am Monday). Medicare card holders will not be charged by the after hours service.
There are several dentists in Ballarat, however most don't do emergency bookings. A good option for dental emergencies is [ 1215 Sturt Street Dental], however it is advisable to call them to make arrangements as required.
Note to Delegates From Overseas
If you are traveling to Australia from another country to attend the conference, please be aware that if you are not an Australian citizen or permanent resident then you may be liable for the full cost of medical treatment and prescription medication.
Some countries have signed a Reciprocal Health Care Agreement with Australia, which means that limited Medicare subsidized treatment for certain situations (such as emergency treatment) may be available for residents and citizens of these countries. For more information, please see the Medicare Australia website.
Regardless of any health care agreements that may be in place, overseas delegates should always purchase travel insurance that provides adequate cover for the duration of their stay in Australia.