17 Oct 2012

Australia sends medical team to Nauru detention camp

2:34 pm on 17 October 2012

Australia's Department of Immigration says a multi-disciplinary health team is now in place in Nauru to assist the more than 300 asylum seekers Canberra has moved to the island.

This comes as the Australian-based Refugee Action Coalition says the asylum seekers are complaining about inadequate health services.

Don Wiseman reports:

"The Coalition says there has been an influenza outbreak and the only preventive action taken is for the inmates to wash their hands. There have also been reports of several attempted suicides since the first asylum seekers were transferred from Christmas Island a month ago. In a statement, the Department of Immigration says International Health and Medical Services is contracted to provide extended primary and mental health care as well as emergency response. It says services already in place include initial health checks and regular mental health screening of people, as well as care for chronic and emerging health issues as required. The Department of Immigration says the team includes doctors, nurses, psychologists and counsellors, with medical specialists to visit on a scheduled basis. International Health and Medical Services refuses to comment and refers enquiries to the Department of Immigration."