GPs rooting for suburbs in dire health straits

After Ms Gillard announced plans to stay in socioeconomically disadvantaged Rooty Hill, the report from the Medicare Local covering the area, WentWest, showed the suburb had almost double the diabetes rate of Sydney metro, far higher rates of smoking during pregnancy and triple the national unemployment rate.

The report indicates two-thirds of GPs in the statistical local area (SLA) of Blacktown — South-West, which includes Rooty Hill, had listed “difficulty of recruiting GPs” as a barrier to expanding their practice.

Over about six months in 2012, 25 practices in the SLA had asked

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