GP support for north Bellarine

Bellarine Community Health (BCH) and Epichealth this week announced a new partnership to provide general practice (GP) services from its Portarlington site.

The partnership sees Epichealth take over the day-to-day and financial operations of the GP clinic, while BCH will continue to run the allied health and social support services from the Fenwick Street site.

“BCH has been unable to recruit more GPs to grow the clinic in Portarlington which is necessary to provide greater service to the community and keep the clinic viable,” BCH CEO Garry Ellis said.

“As a result, it is no longer sustainable for BCH to run the clinic, so we have sought out a trusted provider of GP services to partner with.”

The decision to partner with Epichealth will enable BCH to improve its financial position, whilst maintaining and expanding access to high quality GP services for the local community, BCH said.

Epichealth is a private family practice which began operating in Ocean Grove 15 years ago. They now employ 16 doctors across multiple sites.

“Our larger pool of staff means we have the capacity to support all our clinics which will provide a more sustainable service for the local community,” Epichealth’s Jeremy Forrester said.

“Epichealth is a community minded GP provider and is focused on maintaining and growing high quality GP services for people in the Portarlington area.”

BCH will work with Epichealth to transition the clinic operations and support patients through the process.

Current clients of the GP clinic have been informed of the change of provider and existing clinic staff have been offered ongoing employment with Epichealth.