Hinchinbrook MP announces the Ingham Hospitals’ CT scanner delivery date

Nick Dametto MP with Peter Smith Ingham Health Service Community Advisory Network Chairperson.

10 April 2024

In late 2023, the State Member for Hinchinbrook and Katter’s Australian Party (KAP) Deputy Leader, Nick Dametto, alongside the community of Ingham, welcomed the announcement of a 24/7 CT scanner at the Ingham Hospital. However, following recent advocacy efforts and inquiries, the Health Minister, Hon. Shannon Fentiman, confirmed further key details regarding this essential medical equipment which included a blown-out delivery date of 2025.

On 15 November 2023, Minister Fentiman committed to delivering a CT scanner to the Ingham Hospital in recognition of the critical need for enhanced medical services in the region. Following this, on 6 March 2024 the State Member for Hinchinbrook asked the Health Minister through a Question on Notice what the expected timeframe for the commencement of works and operational start date would be.

The Health Minister advised that the service will be operated by Townsville Hospital and Health Service (THHS) staff and that an assessment was being undertaken of scanning numbers to determine if an uplift in additional full time equivalent staff roles will be required to align with appropriate staffing requirements. As such, the Minister confirmed that the THHS were aiming for a late 2025 delivery.

Mr Dametto stated that he and the Hinchinbrook community were thankful for the Minister’s support but a delivery date of late 2025 fell well short of the community’s expectations.

“We all appreciate the current constraints and worker shortages that are affecting the building industry however the Hinchinbrook electorate has waited long enough for essential lifesaving medical services such as a 24/7 CT scanner at the Ingham Hospital,” he said.

“By the time that the CT scanner is delivered and operational it would be approximately two years since the Minister made the commitment to deliver, which is pretty disappointing.

“We are extremely pleased to hear that the service will be operated by THHS staff, and I will be doing everything in my power to advocate for an early delivery of this service.

“It is important to note, that the current lack of CT scanner is just one issue that the Ingham Hospital is facing. The Emergency Department and Maternity Services are also in dire need of upgrades.

“The current facilities in the Emergency Department are not equipped to handle the complex needs and increased volume of patients. Feedback indicates that the facilities are not of a standard that allows patients to receive adequate and confidential emergency medical attention. In the Maternity Services, stakeholders are calling for the installation of a birthing pool similar to what most other birthing centres or hospitals have.

“I’ve been made aware that water births are becoming popular and at the Ingham Hospital while a mother is giving birth, we have the midwives and partners filling up the pool with warm water to maintain the water temperature. I am of the understanding that it is essentially a medical grade blow up pool, which takes time to set up, so unfortunately some mothers are missing out on this experience when time is of the essence. We would love to see a permanent built-in birthing pool at the Ingham Hospital.”

The Townsville Hospital and Health Service Board has agreed that there are challenges with the current facilities and acknowledged the significance and importance of these issues to the Ingham community.

“Regional Queenslanders deserve the same health care services as the State’s cities, which is why I will continue to lobby the State Government for necessary health infrastructure upgrades and medical equipment for the Hinchinbrook electorate,” Mr Dametto said.

Peter Smith, Ingham Health Service Community Advisory Network (CAN) Chairperson was disappointed that the community would need to wait until late 2025 to see the CT scanner delivered.

“We would like to thank our State Member, Nick Dametto, for his continued support regarding securing a CT scanner for the Ingham Hospital,” Mr Smith said.

“Members of the CAN felt very excited after the Minister’s commitment back in November last year. We had expected that works would commence the start of this year and that the service would be operating soon after.

“A CT scanner is an essential life saver, and the community shouldn’t have to wait two years since the announcement for it to be delivered.”


Photo: Hinchinbrook MP and KAP Deputy Leader, Nick Dametto.

Media Enquiries: Caitlin Schofield – 0402 352 343.

Nick Dametto MP