Minister for Health Lawrence Springborg
Minister for Health Lawrence Springborg Cade Mooney

Springborg's lips are sealed on medical partner

A UNIVERSITY has come on board as a partner to provide medical school services at the Sunshine Coast Public University Hospital's training centre.

But Health Minister Lawrence Springborg remains tight lipped on who that is.

"The one who is the most likely partner is the one who I thought would be the most interested and that's where it looks like we'll end up, but we can't say," he said.

"It's wrong when discussions are going on to speculate and I'm not going to."

In 2011, The University of Queensland partnered with the University of the Sunshine Coast and TAFE Sunshine Coast to establish a Skills, Academic and Research Centre at the new public hospital in Kawana.

Then in February last year, UQ withdrew from the agreement to provide the medical school services.

Mr Springborg said a new potential partner was found "very quickly", however the State Government had been waiting on the Federal Government to come up with the funding to secure the additional 35 medical student places needed.

"We've got a very, very keen partner who will do a great job, we just need to get those funded places, and we will," he said.

"We're working on a solution for the finalisation of those places as quickly as we can. We don't control that, the Federal Government controls that.

"Funding new spots and 35 new medical school places does not come cheap."

While the delay in finalising the new partnership has created an air of uncertainty over the future of the Skills, Academic and Research Centre, Mr Springborg said "there has to" be a medical training school on the Coast.

"I wish when UQ withdrew, given these places were supposed to be associated with here, they should have left those places behind, but they didn't," he said.

"That's their business, but I'm very disappointed.

"What we've got to do is get those places and then over time, in the next couple of decades, it'll probably have its own medical school."


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