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The Western Australian Government has revealed it plans to fund more than $1.3 billion in healthcare for rural communities over the next decade.

The state has revealed plans to spend $500 million over four years to help improve access to affordable, quality health care in the state’s communities, with the money earmarked to fund health and social care workers, mental health and drug treatment.

Key points:The government will spend $1bn over four-year period to help rural communities access affordable health careThe money will go towards staffing the WA Rural Health Service and expanding the local community health centresThe WA Government is also announcing an additional $500m in the 2017-18 budget to expand rural health care, with an extra $1 million allocated to the WA Regional Health Service.

It comes as the WA Government says it will spend more than 1.3bn AUD ($1.5bn) over four months to expand and maintain access to rural healthcare.

The WA Rural Hospital Corporation said in a statement the money would be used to fund the WA Health Service, provide more mental health resources and improve rural health and safety services.

“The WA Regional Medical Service will also receive a significant increase to its operating budget and the WA Ambulance Service will receive an increase in funding,” the statement said.

The announcement comes as WA Premier Colin Barnett announced the State Government will spend nearly $500,000 on community health services for WA.

“We are in the process of setting up the WA State Government Rural Health Strategy to deliver the best possible outcomes for rural and remote communities, including ensuring they have access to safe and reliable healthcare,” he said.

“There is a need for better access to healthcare for our most vulnerable residents.”

The WA Premier says the State will spend an additional 1.6 billion AUD on healthcare services over four weeks to help build up rural healthcare servicesThe Premier said the WA Federal Government is “firmly committed to delivering a robust, comprehensive and sustainable rural health strategy”, and that the State would invest $500 per person per month on health and support for rural health.”WA is committed to the best delivery of community healthcare, including the provision of affordable, high quality healthcare for its residents, including rural,” he told the WA Premier’s Live!

radio interview.

“Our Government has already committed more than a billion AUD to our community health systems over the last two years, including $500 billion in additional funding for the WA Community Health Service.”