It took fifteen concrete trucks and 115 cubic metres of concrete poured over a 6 hour period to set the foundations for the new Short Stay Unit.
The pour is a milestone for the project being built to support the Emergency Department at the front of West Gippsland Hospital. Extensive site clearing and ground preparation works have beern underway at the hospital for several months. The formwork is now progressing to the stage for the slab to be poured.
When constructed, the eight-bed Short Stay Unit will provide much needed additional capacity for the Emergency Department which continues to experience growth in demand for services as the population in Baw Baw Shire climbs.
Chief Executive Officer, Dan Weeks, said the construction of the Short Stay Unit was one of two projects currently underway at West Gippsland Hospital with a third operating theatre also being built on level one.
“The construction projects have placed challenges on access and car parking and while alternative patient drop off and disability car parking has been installed, unfortunately there is unavoidable disruption.”
“We recently set up a volunteer concierge service which is assisting to direct people to navigate through the hospital.
“People who have mobility issues or need help getting into the hospital are advised to follow the yellow line painted on the main driveway entrance to the hospital around to the back of the Emergency Department (ED) where the ground is level and more wheelchair friendly.”
Mr Weeks said volunteers would be available during the day at the rear of ED to provide directions. An intercom is available for people who need help accessing the hospital after hours.
Visitors and those who do not have mobility issues can still walk into the main entrance of the hospital and Emergency Department by following the pathway alongside the builder’s fencing.
People who need to access Consulting Suites, Haemodialysis or District Nursing can park in the large car park off Sergeant Street or District Nursing car park off Ley Street where additional disability spaces are provided and the ground is more level.
The construction works are expected to continue until after mid-year.
For more information phone 5623 0611.
Changes to wheelchair and disability access
The patient drop off roundabout at the front main entrance of West Gippsland Hospital is CLOSED TO VEHICLES while construction takws pllace on a new 8 bed Short Stay Unit to support the Emergency Department.
People can still access the front hospital entrance and Emergency Department (ED) by foot. However vehicles can no longer be driven up or parked near the front door during the construction period.
As a result people in wheel chairs or who need assistance to enter the hospital are being directed to an alternative patient drop off area at the rear of the Emergency Department. This way they will not have to navigate the slope at the front of the hospital
1. Drop off for patients requiring wheelchair access or assistance to enter the hospital
Directional signage has been erected at the main entrance driveway directing people with special needs to follow the painted fluorescent yellow line on the roadway through the main hospital car park to Ley Street to the rear of the Emergency Department. Two car parks have been designated for 5 minute drop off only.
In addition an intercom has been installed outside the veranda door at the rear of ED to allow for patient admissions out of hours.
2. Parking bays at the front of hospital closest to Cooinda Lodge have been signed for disabled parking and patient pick up drop off only
This area is designated for patients and their carers who are able to access the hospital by themselves (by foot) by following the painted pedestrian crossing alongside the hoardings to the front of the hospital.
3. Access to Cooinda Lodge
People can park at the rear of Cooinda off Ley Street and enter via the rear entry doors into Cooinda or they can come through the main hospital and enter Cooinda via the hospital green corridor.
4. Consulting Suites driveway
The rear drop off area and quadrangle at the top of the first driveway off Landsborough Street past the consulting suites is CLOSED to enable construction of the third operating theatre.
- Patients and visitors who need to attend the Mary Sargeant building for District Nursing and Haemodialysis are being advised to park in the car park off Ley Street and enter via District Nursing front entrance where disability parking is also provided. Alternatively they may park in the large vcar park off Segeant Street..
- Staff and visitors accessing rear officers, meeting rooms and seminar room will also need to enter via Ley Street.
5. Pick up of discharged patients
Patients discharged in wheelchairs will exit via the Community Rehabilitation Centre (CRC). Two car parks next to the concrete ramp directly opposite the CRC building have been allocated for 5 minute patient pick up only.
WGHG Chief Executive Officer, Dan Weeks, apologised for the inconvenience these arrangements will cause for some people but they have been put in place to ensure the safety of patients, staff and visitors.
“We are encouraging people to allow extra time if they need to visit the hospital to allow for car parking.”
The $9.3M project to construct an eight-bed short stay unit alongside the Emergency Department and a third operating theatre on level one of the main hospital are funded under the Victorian Labor Government’s Regional Health Infrastructure Funding (RHIF) project. A new roadway will be also constructed in the coming months across the lawn area at the front of the hospital to increase car parking and create a new patient drop off area.
Mr Weeks said the projects would provide much needed short-term additional physical capacity on site to cope with the growing demands for services.
“While the projects do not form part of longer term plans for the hospital, this new Short Stay Unit and Third Theatre will provide much needed short-term additional capacity to cope with the growing demand.“