23 March 2012
Improvements to emergency unit at Wellington
Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional Infrastructure and Services Andrew Stoner, Minister for Health Jillian Skinner, and Member for Orange Andrew Gee have announced that the emergency unit and ambulance entry at Wellington Health Service will be relocated closer to other acute clinical services on site to improve safety and services for the local community.
Mr Stoner and Mr Gee were at Wellington Health Service today to announce that Western NSW Local Health District would receive $1.8 million in capital funding over the next three years as part of the NSW Government’s rural minor works initiative, from which the Wellington project would be funded.
The capital works will include a remodelling of the Emergency Department allowing for modern equipment to treat patients and improve patient flows through the ED.
“The NSW Government is committed to improving access to health care services in rural and remote NSW, and delivering quality health care as close as safely possible to where people live,” Mr Stoner said.
“Consultation with nurses told us the current emergency department is far too isolated, especially at night, from the main acute services and today I am delighted to announce we are fixing that.
“This funding boost will help maintain and improve the working environment in Wellington with the new emergency department to have a centrally located secure staff station that allows quick and easy access to all acute areas and includes the addition of a duress alarm, CCTV and security access control.
“These changes will improve patient, visitor and staff safety.”
Mrs Skinner said the NSW Government’s rural minor works initiative was targeted at:
• improving access to health services for patients in rural communities;
• providing services that will assist in supporting, attracting and retaining staff in rural health services; and
• improving the infrastructure of rural facilities.
“We understand that recruiting and retaining health professionals in rural and remote areas is a significant challenge,” Mrs Skinner said.
“Staff, patients and visitors to Wellington need to know they are safe, and that services are being delivered in the most efficient way possible.”
Mr Gee said the announcement would be welcomed by the local community.
“It's terrific news for Wellington, but especially for the wonderful staff in the emergency department, as well as patients and visitors,” Mr Gee said.
“The NSW Liberals & Nationals Government understands the importance of investing in rural and regional hospitals like Wellington.
“Relocating the emergency department will not only improve safety, but also make the delivery of services more efficient and improve pathways to emergency, inpatient and support services.
"The relocation of the emergency department was an important matter that was raised during the 2011 election campaign and I'm delighted we are going to be able to resolve this issue."
Construction is due to begin in the first half of next year and is scheduled for completion in December 2013.