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Becoming Child Wise Accredited: West Gippsland Healthcare Group

West Gippsland Healthcare Group (WGHG) is the first healthcare service in Australia to receive Child Wise accreditation. 

WGHG provides a range of healthcare services including acute medical and surgical, obstetric, emergency, paediatrics, community and aged care services, primarily in the Shire of Baw Baw, approximately 100 kms east of Melbourne. They operate from several sites and provide services to over 40,000 people. 

WGHG has worked with Child Wise on embedding a child safe culture and applying a child safety lens across their services to ensure they meet child safety requirements and legislation, and to ensure the safety of children and young people in their care. 

WGHG was committed to understanding their strengths and areas for improvement. They demonstrated strong commitment from their leadership and staff on embracing significant operational, and most importantly cultural changes.

WGHG introduced new policies and processes, increased security, provided staff training in child protection and increased their engagement with children and young people to hear their experiences of health care; ensuring they were not only legislatively compliant, but thought through and tailored to the needs of the community. 

WGHG is committed to continuous improvement and will undertake a rigorous annual self-assessment to demonstrate how it continues to strengthen its approach to child safety over the duration of the accreditation period of 3 years. 

WGHG Chief Executive Officer, Dan Weeks, said it was pleasing to be the first healthcare service in Australia to achieve this accreditation from Child Wise.

WGHG have chosen to continue their relationship with Child Wise and signed up for a further three years of accreditation.