The Greater Bunbury Medicare Urgent Care Clinic (UCC) has opened at the Eaton Fair Shopping Centre in Western Australia.

The clinic is part of the Australian Government’s efforts to provide accessible and urgent medical care to the community.

Operated by qualified doctors and nurses, it is intended to ease the burden on local hospitals by offering extended hours of operation and providing fully bulk-billed walk-in care seven days a week.

At present, around 45% of patients presenting at Bunbury Hospital require non-urgent or semi-urgent care.

Australian Health and Aged Care Minister Mark Butler said: “The Greater Bunbury Medicare UCC is going to make a big difference to patients in this region.

“The Albanese Government is committed to strengthening Medicare and making it easier and cheaper to get quality healthcare, by tripling the bulk billing incentive and making medicines cheaper.”

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The Greater Bunbury Medicare UCC joins the four existing Medicare UCCs in Western Australia, which are located in Perth City, Rockingham, Clarkson and Beeliar.

Two more clinics in Midland and Broome are due to open before the end of this year.

The federal government will work with the Western Australian Primary Health Alliance and the state government to ensure the timely establishment of all planned Medicare UCCs in Western Australia.

Western Australia Senator Louise Pratt said: “The Greater Bunbury Medicare UCC will mean people in this community who need urgent but not acute care can get it quickly, even if it’s outside standard hours – and all they’ll need is their Medicare card.

“I know many families who have had to wait long hours at the emergency department for non-life-threatening issues.

“This Medicare UCC will ease pressure on local EDs and be much more convenient for our communities – closer to home, at short notice, and bulk billed under Medicare.”