Friday, March 26, 2010

A third hospital for Canberra?

Negotiations are underway between the ACT Government and the Little Company of Mary on the sale of the hospital infrastructure at the Bruce campus.

Today the Chief Minister spoke about the possibility of buidling a new hostpial if the negotations with LCM fall through.

But is a third hospital in the best  interests of consumers?  

We want access to safe, quality and appropriate services but are not convinced that a third hospital will provide that to our community.

We are concerned that building a third hospital and cost of maintaining three hospitals will have a negative impact on money available to community based services. There are not enough health dollars to service the current demand.  

The Government has a large program of works on infrastructure and redesigning health services underway based on moving many services to the community.  We support the move to community based health services.

We call upon the government to commit to a focus on primary health care. We are concerned that having three public hospitals in Canberra will not get us closer to achieving that.

We are supportive of the new nurse led walk in centre that is opening in May.  We are also very supportive of enhanced community health centres such as the new centres planned for Belconnen, Gungahlin and Tuggeranong.  We would hate to see funds diverted from community based services to pay for a third hospital.


vallee39 said...

I heard John Stanhope on Friday, and really felt that his statement was more by way of a threat to Mark Coleridge. If he is serious, I wonder where he thinks he is going to get people to staff a third hospital. Calvary Public Hospital is already understaffed, and many of those who are working on the public wards are inexperienced. The food is disgusting and nutritionally inadequate - obviously because of having to fit into a small budget. Is that what we could look forward to with ever stretching dollars in our health system?
Val Lee

Darlene said...

Hi Val
We are certainly concerned that the cost to build a new hospital and then maintain three public hospitals will place even more pressure on the government's budget and may result in a diversion of funds from community based services.
We share your concern about the staffing levels. The ACT Government does have a workforce development plan in place however we are unsure if this would be sufficent to address the increased need for health professilonals.