New coronavirus test centres will be set up in Moranbah and Proserpine.
New coronavirus test centres will be set up in Moranbah and Proserpine.

Moranbah and Proserpine to receive Covid-19 test centres

NEW coronavirus testing centres will be set up in Moranbah and Proserpine after a mutli-million dollar funding boost from mining giant BHP.

The Covid-19 testing centres, expected to open by the end of May, will ease strain on health services and separate suspected cases from the community.

They have been made possible after BHP allocated $7.6 million from its recently created Vital Resources Fund.

The initial investment will allow the centres to operate for six months, with further funding to be considered if needed.

The service, managed by Vanguard Health, will allow patients to be tested for Covid-19 after presenting clear symptoms of the virus or following high-risk interaction.

Triage and testing services with a telehealth capability will be offered.

A sign for Goonyella Riverside Mine and Moranbah North Mine. Picture: Zizi Averill
A sign for Goonyella Riverside Mine and Moranbah North Mine. Picture: Zizi Averill

Vanguard Health chief executive Tim Gallagher said: "We are delighted to be supporting the people of the Isaac and Whitsunday regions through these vital Covid-19 testing centres, in partnership with BHP."

Mines Minister Anthony Lynham said the industry had continued to step up to protect workers and regional communities.

"The sector has taken up the challenges of changed work practices, of social distancing, of extra hygiene and reducing its travelling workforces, while continuing to provide pay packets for Queensland families," Dr Lynham said.

BHP Mitsubishi Alliance asset president James Palmer and BHP Mitsui Coal asset president Elsabe Muller both welcomed the move.

"Funding these testing centres shows that we will play our part to allay any fears, and support Queensland during this challenging time," Ms Muller said.


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