Latrobe Lung Function, the region’s first public respiratory testing facility has started seeing patients.
The new service was established by Latrobe Regional Hospital with $60,000 in Victorian Government funding announced at the reopening of the Hazelwood Mine Fire Inquiry in May.
The government also allocated funding for a mine fire health clinic which is being run by Latrobe Community Health Service.
The tests measure lung capacity and their effectiveness in distributing oxygen into the blood stream.
LRH Chief Medical Officer, Dr Simon Fraser said the commencement of the service was another milestone in local health care.
"Adults and children will now have the option to access a publicly funded lung function testing facility on site at the hospital," Dr Fraser said.
"This is an important expansion to the many services we already provide as the major regional hospital east of Melbourne."
Latrobe Regional Hospital has worked closely with staff at the lung function laboratory at Monash Health to establish the service.
"An experienced respiratory scientist from Monash Health has been employed by LRH to operate the service," Dr Fraser said.
The service will run each Wednesday and Thursday, however operating hours will increase with demand.
A referral from a GP or specialist is required to access the service. For further information phone 5173 8111.