NEW MAN IN CHARGE: Dr Dilip Kumar is clinical director of the Gladstone Hospital emergency department.
NEW MAN IN CHARGE: Dr Dilip Kumar is clinical director of the Gladstone Hospital emergency department. Chris Lees

Drug and alcohol the big issues at Gladstone ED

INDIA, Sydney, Brisbane, Gladstone.

It's been a long journey for Dr Dilip Kumar to get here.

The new clinical director of the Gladstone Hospital emergency department, officially took the title last month.

Dr Kumar studied at university in Australia and moved back to India to practise medicine.

He then returned to Australia in 2008 to continue his development, working in Sydney and Brisbane.

He's been acting director for six months in Gladstone, and arrived here in September 2016.

"Most of my stints have been in bigger hospitals so I waned to explore what the regional hospital challenges are like," Dr Kumar said.

"Since I came here (to Gladstone) I realised it's much more difficult working in a smaller centre compared to a bigger one."

Dr Kumar said he thought a bigger hospital would've been tougher because of the more complicated cases he dealt with, but he soon realised he was wrong.

With Gladstone's demographic changing significantly since the boom, Dr Kumar said the types of incidents at the emergency department had changed.

"However, the most common presentations has remained the same, it's just that people are coming in with more complex problems," he said.

Dr Kumar said he saw many problems with drugs and alcohol, combined with mental health issues.

On average there are 85 presentations at the emergency department each day.

Another exciting part of Dr Kumar's position is having a role with the upgraded Gladstone Hospital emergency department. The State Government has committed $42 million towards it. Dr Kumar said it would be nice to be part of the journey.



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