In good news for increasing the footprint of public pathology, it has been announced that the Western Health pathology contract will transfer to the Alfred / Monash Shared Pathology Service from 1 July 2024.

The MSAV has worked long and hard on the issue of pathology service provision in Public Health and this is a big step forward.

Members working at Sunshine and Footscray laboratories should look forward to public sector jobs with better pay and conditions upon transfer to the shared service.

On the workload side, transfers from private to public have also resulted in more scientists in the workplace leading to better coverage. It doesn’t create a perfect workplace, things are never perfect, but the workplace normally improves significantly in a range of areas within in a short period of time after the transfer.

For members at Alfred and Monash, the change should mean very little in the short term though there will no doubt be opportunities for some members to become involved with the project team.

Once we are clear as to what is exactly in scope, we will also need to commence discussions with the Shared Pathology Service about possible workload impacts for Alfred and Monash when Western comes on board.

There is a high likelihood that some work currently performed in Heidelberg will head their way.

In recent years, Northern Health, Mildura, Echuca, Swan Hill, Wonthaggi and Leongatha have had labs returned to public hands.

There is a long way to go in this space, but bringing a big metropolitan Health Service like Western Health into public hands is a very important step.

The Union will continue to push the Government, Department of Health and Health Services to ensure the restoration of public pathology labs in public hospitals.

We know that this change may raise some questions for members. If you have questions about how this transfer may impact you or what restoring public pathology labs to public hospitals means, please contact us.

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