Article

14.11.2018 12:19 Age: 28 days

Northam and Narrogin hospitals infrastructure update


The WA Country Health Service is currently overseeing the biggest transformation of country hospitals and health facilities in more than a generation.

This $1.5 billion building program is the most ambitious ever undertaken in regional WA and includes more than 80 sites from Kununurra in the Kimberley to Albany in the Great Southern.

Along with new bricks and mortar comes the installation of state-of-the-art information and communications technology, including telehealth links and videoconferencing to facilitate services such as emergency telehealth and more options for access to specialists.

In line with contemporary international approaches to planning, the WA Country Health Service's infrastructure program focuses on bringing services together into healthcare hubs – community mental health, child health and allied health, prevention and education, and emergency care.

Among many recent developments, the new Karratha Health Campus was opened in late-October. Karratha Health Campus is the largest health infrastructure investment in regional WA’s history and heralds a new era in healthcare facility design for the Pilbara region.

Northam and Narrogin hospitals are key facilities for Wheatbelt communities and are being constructed across multiple stages, to ensure the continuity of day-to-day service delivery. WA Country Health Service infrastructure projects are managed by the Department of Finance.

The two hospitals have achieved a number of successes and both redevelopments are now partially open; however there have also been some delays.

In Northam, the new outpatients’ wing, inpatient ward extension, refurbished kitchen, supply area and engineering department have been completed. Transition to the new outpatient building took place in early October and patients and staff have been very impressed with the bright, modern building which has significantly enhanced consultation capacity.

The new emergency department and first stage of the operating theatres are still under construction and expect to be handed over by the builder in late 2018. Construction will continue on stage two of the operating theatres, renal dialysis, pharmacy and learning and development areas, with final handover due in mid-2019.

Narrogin Hospital is taking shape, with the new inpatient wards, birthing suites, stage one of the outpatient facility, kitchen, laundry, pharmacy and supply departments completed and operational. 

Construction of chemotherapy and stage two of the outpatient facility is now complete. The new pathology, dental, operating theatre and sterilising unit are under construction with completion expected in mid-2019.

With all of the WA Country Health Service’s infrastructure projects, Chief Executive Jeff Moffet explains that the most important aspect is opening a facility that is safe and ready to provide the appropriate care for our patients.

“While most of our infrastructure projects have progressed on time and on budget, we are experiencing delays with Northam and Narrogin hospitals," Mr Moffet said.

"Our most important goal is providing safe facilities that are fit for our local communities.

“It is not unexpected to have challenges with such a significant capital works program.

“The reason for the delays differs at each site but includes challenges with the builds, latent conditions and inclement weather," he added.

Mr Moffet said the Department of Finance was actively working with builders to mitigate any further delays.

"I am confident that Narrogin and Northam hospitals, when completed, will provide outstanding environments for our patients and staff," he said. 

“We have achieved so much in the past year, including completion of the Warren Health Service, Karratha Health Campus, Esperance Health Campus maternity unit, Katanning Health Service, Pingelly Health Service, commencing planning for the redevelopment of Geraldton Health Campus and many more.

“It has been an extraordinary year of achievements for the WA Country Health Service’s capital works projects,” he added. 


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