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Former miners offered free lung health check

Heart 5 clients share a coffee and a chat on the HEART 5 deck

Free lung health checks will be on offer in Bundaberg later this month for retired and former Queensland mine and quarry workers.

The Heart 5 Mobile Health unit will be in Bundaberg on Monday 21 and Tuesday 22 November at the Bundaberg Recreational Precinct, University Drive, Branyan.

The service is provided in partnership between Resources Safety and Health Queensland (RSHQ) and Heart of Australia.

Executive Director of RSHQ’s Occupational Health division Dean Barr said the world-first mobile health unit the Heart 5 travels Queensland to provide lung health checks for mine and quarry workers who may be at risk of mine dust lung disease.

“If mine dust lung disease is detected early it can reduce the risk of disease progression, helping to maintain quality of life, and get workers access to support.

“We’re proud to partner with Heart of Australia who are visiting mining communities offering lung health checks paid for by RSHQ.

“The free lung health checks for retired and former Queensland mine and quarry workers include chest X-ray and spirometry, and where required, other follow-up investigations such as high-resolution CT scans,” Mr Barr said.

HEART 5 radiographer – Mark Moxey explains the CT scan procedure to a client

The program is part of Queensland mining safety and health regulations that provide retired and former workers with a free lung check every five years for life.

Heart of Australia’s Head of Operations Ewan Wylie said the Queensland-made, 56-tonne, 34-wheel road train Heart 5 was launched in February this year.

“We built Heart 5 with support from the Queensland Government and RSHQ, specifically to travel into regional and remote Queensland to provide mine and quarry workers with access to the best respiratory health services available.

“Workers can be assured they are in the best of hands – our team includes experienced respiratory specialists, radiologists and technicians who utilise highly sensitive on-board equipment to investigate possible abnormalities,” Mr Wylie said.

Heart 5 is the fifth truck in Heart of Australia’s fleet of mobile services, which have been improving health outcomes for Queensland’s rural and remote communities since 2014.

If you are a retired or former Queensland mine or quarry worker, contact the Mine Dust Health Support Service on 1300 445 715 to discuss your eligibility and how to arrange a free lung health check on Heart 5 in Bundaberg on the 20-21 November.

If you still work in the industry, speak to your workplace about mandatory lung health checks as part of your employment.

Learn more about lung health checks at Miners' Health Matters and the Heart 5 Mobile Health Unit at Heart of Australia.

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