Finally completed – new Short Stay Unit and Third Operating Theatre

Following almost 11 months, a new Short Stay Unit and a third Operating Theatre are complete at West Gippsland Hospital.

The two projects totalling $9.3M have been funded by the Victorian Government Regional Health infrastructure Fund (RHIF). 

West Gippsland Healthcare Group,  Chief Executive Officer, Dan Weeks said the projects would provide much needed additional capacity as the hospital continued to experience increased demand for health services. 

Mr Weeks said the WGHG was pleased to have increased the scope of works through an additional $900,000 RHIF funding round. This funding allowed for construction of a new roadway and car parking at the front of the Hospital to improve access and provide an additional 28 car parking spaces.

“We also updated our theatre sterilisers, installed a new chiller system for the third theatre and a reverse osmosis water system to aid infection control. A new cordless communication and nurse call system is also being installed across the hospital. The total cost of projects is $10.28m.”

What is a Short Stay Unit?

The new Short Stay Unit (SSU) is a specialist unit attached to the Emergency Department (ED).  The SSU supports patients who need a longer stay in ED (less than 24 hours) for assessment, therapy or observation that might avoid an admission to the Hospital’s Medical Unit.

Dan Weeks said the SSU is a welcome addition as it will help to reduce pressure on ED bed availability and improve patient flow. 

“The third theatre built alongside the existing operating theatres on level one of the hospital will also increase capacity and improve elective surgery flow.”

WGHG Board Chair, Christine Holland, said it had been a challenging year at WGHG marked by rapid growth in demand for services and major construction development.

“While we look forward to the benefits these facilities will provide to the community, we acknowledge there was significant disruption to services at times. Staff, patients, visitors and the community are praised for their tolerance and support during this construction.”

“The WGHG Board wishes to thanks Harriet Shing, Member for Eastern Victoria, for her support in advocating for West Gippsland Hospital. While these projects do not form part of our longer term vision for the hospital they will provide much needed additional capacity in the short term.”

Mrs Holland also thanked local Aboriginal Elders for their input into co-designing the Short Stay Unit to create a welcoming environment. 

“We are delighted to have some fabulous new work by local artist, Eileen Harrison in the Emergency Department and more work is planned including a new garden near the front entry.”

The Short Stay Unit and Third Operating Theatre are expected to open in November.

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