Work is set to start on a $1.8 million re-configuration and expansion of the emergency department (ED) at Shoalhaven District Hospital, part of a $5 million revamp of the facility taking shape over the next few months.
Shoalhaven Hospital’s Group general manager, Ian Power, said a redesign of the ED configuration would improve access to the department and enhance the flow of patients through the busy area.
“The ED expansion will improve the ability of our staff to better meet the needs of patients who present to the emergency department,” he said.
“There will be improved access and visibility within the waiting room, as well as additional examination areas and offload bays for ambulance presentations.”
Other works over the coming months include the $1.5 million construction of an additional operating theatre suite, designed specifically for endoscopy services.
Following extensive planning and preliminary works, the $1.5 million redevelopment of Medical Ward B into an Aged Care Unit will also start.
“Originally, the plan was for minor refurbishments to Medical Ward B to better accommodate our older patients, but the project has grown in scope to involve significant redevelopment works to create a purpose-built unit to be operational ahead of next year’s winter period,” Mr Power said.
“All of these projects will be a welcome to addition to Shoalhaven hospital and recognise the growing demand for services.
“While this an exciting time for the community, the hospital campus will be busier than usual so we ask people attending the hospital to be mindful of the activity.”
The hospital is working closely with local contractors, tradespeople, staff and Shoalhaven City Council to minimise the impact of these projects on parking availability.
“Our goal will be to carry out the construction with minimal disruption to patients, visitors and staff and we appreciate the community’s understanding as work starts on these significant and important capital works projects,” Mr Power said.
“We also urge all visitors to the hospital campus to follow the direction of safety signage during this busy construction period and please take extra care when walking and driving in the area,” Mr Power said.
Despite changes to the appearance of the building outside, inside treatment of patients will continue as normal.
The works will be completed by early 2017.
South Coast MP Shelley Hancock said she was delighted the projects would soon be underway and provide a much needed boost to the growing need for services at our hospital.
“The need for increased access to car parking has been recognised and also remains a priority,” Mrs Hancock said.
“Minister Skinner has previously announced $8m for increased parking, we are committed to parking improvements at SDMH and planning for the new 220 car parking facility is well underway.”