Building of the new hospital and ambulance station for Glen Innes will start in just two weeks after Hutchison Builders won the tender for the major construction project.
Member for Northern Tablelands, Adam Marshall, announced the nationwide construction company had been appointed by NSW Health to deliver the new $50 million Glen Innes Hospital and $8.5 million Ambulance Station earlier this week.
Making the announcement alongside Mayor Rob Banham and local health staff, Mr Marshall said construction was scheduled to get underway on both projects on 30 January.
“This is another huge and positive step forward for these two crucial Glen Innes health projects, which have been a long time coming,” Mr Marshall said.
“The community will be very excited to see machinery on the hospital site and soil being moved, marking the start of construction on these once-in-a-generation builds.”
The projects were planned with extensive community consultation. The work was originally planned to be a $20 million refurbishment, but when it was clear from early clinical planning that a refurbishment would not be sufficient, planning began for a completely new building to be built on the corner of Ferguson and Macquarie Streets with a budget of $50 million.
Mr Marshall said the first stage of the hospital construction would see enabling works to remove the old and abandoned nurses quarters building, preparing the ground at the rear of the existing hospital, ready for the new hospital.
“The new $50 million Glen Innes Hospital will provide a purpose-built facility offering flexible clinical services and contemporary models of care including emergency, medical imaging, maternity, birthing, community health, inpatient unit, as well as administration areas for staff,” Mr Marshall said.
“It will contain 29 inpatient beds, eight consult rooms for GPs and other specialists and allied health professionals, new maternity birthing suites, operating theatre and five day surgery chairs, just to name a few of the features.”
Co-located on the hospital campus, the new Glen Innes Ambulance Station will feature internal parking for up to six emergency ambulance vehicles, administration, office areas and staff amenities, logistics and storage areas, staff parking and relief accommodation and an internal wash bay.
“It made sense to everyone, from a continuity-of-care aspect, that a location for a new ambulance station is included on hospital grounds where nurses, doctors and paramedics can support each other,” Mr Marshall said.
“I cannot wait until the end of the month to see these two eagerly-anticipated projects to get underway.”
The state of the facilities and staff accomodation is often cited as a reason Glen Innes has had such a hard time recruiting and keeping health professionals, so it is hoped this new hospital will help address the issue.
Image: Hunter New England health Director Medical Services Sundar Thava, left, Acting Director Nursing and Midwifery Michelle Whiteley, Acting General Manager Northern Tablelands Stephen Joyce, Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall, Mayor Rob Banham and Glen Innes Acting Health Services Manager Theresa Carseldine. (Supplied)