With the Christmas period in full swing, the South West Hospital and Health Service (SWHHS) has reminded residents to use common sense of the festive period and keep themselves out of the emergency department which will in all likelihood put a dampener on any celebrations.
Last year saw 606 people make a visit to the hospital between Christmas Eve and New Years Day and Executive Director of Medical Services Dr Tom Gibson has a theory as to why admission rates go up at this time of year.
““Traditionally, the Christmas and New Year periods can be very busy periods in any emergency department and last year’s holiday period was particularly busy,’’ Dr Gibson said.
“We don’t want to see a similar increase during this coming festive season. In particular, we tend to see a noticeable increase in alcohol-related attendances – either in terms of people presenting intoxicated or with injuries resulting from alcohol-related behaviour such as drink-driving, fights, assaults, falls and other accidents.”
As long as people remember to use common sense at holiday barbeques and pool parties then they will have a good time and not have to deal with medical staff that are working on holidays.
This comes on the back of the SWHHS releasing the data from a survey they conducted which says that the overall region could be doing a better job looking after their health.
According to the phone survey, around one in three residents are classified as obese, while in the Balonne, Maranoa and Murweh council, the number is a much more concerning 45 per cent.
Alcohol consumption is another area for improvement as 26.8 per cent of the region engage in risky drinking behaviours, above the state average of 19.8.
Bulloo, Paroo and Quilpie registered 35.4 per cent of people engaging in such behaviours.
It was not all doom and gloom however as only 12.2 per cent of residents smoked daily which is below the state average of 13.8.
Dr Gibson said that it was important for people to take ownership of their lifestyle behaviours to try and improve the overall health of the area.
“Our message is that you can change your unhealthy lifestyle behaviours and we will help you if you genuinely want to do so,’’ he said.
“I encourage everyone to be more active, eat healthier and make small changes to improve their health.”
Help is available at the following links to help people get their health under control and ready to start 2016 on the right note.
www.healthier.qld.gov.au to find out more about nutrition and exercise tips, videos and a range of recipes.
Information to help individuals and communities tackle the harmful effects of alcohol is available at:
Information on quitting smoking is available at: http://www.qld.gov.au/health/staying-healthy/atods/smoking/index.html