Bundaberg Region Mayor Jack Dempsey has thanked Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk for committing the State Government to beginning the detailed search for a new Bundaberg Hospital site.
Writing on his Facebook page, Mayor Dempsey said: “There’s no doubt a new level 5 hospital is needed to improve health outcomes, reduce travel times and attract a highly qualified medical workforce to the Bundaberg Region.”
“A new hospital will be a major driver to boost the medical workforce more broadly, including GPs,” Mayor Dempsey said.
“Medical staff and patients deserve the best-possible conditions in a modern-state-of-the-art hospital. Refurbishing the existing hospital on the current site would cause mayhem for staff and patients.”
The News Mail reports that Ms Palaszczuk revealed detailed analysis would now begin to identify a new site for the Bundaberg Hospital, its size, complexity, staffing and services.
After receiving a preliminary business case recently, it's expected that funding will be provided for a detailed business case in the State Budget on 11 June.
The Premier was reported saying criteria for the site would consider the size, flood levels, accessibility and closeness to the population.
In December last year, Mayor Dempsey launched a petition calling for a new Bundaberg Hospital. The petition closes on 3 June 2019 and currently has 1242 signatures.
“I thank the Premier for listening and acting. I look forward to the detailed business case progressing quickly and offer full support from Council,” he said.
“I'd also like to acknowledge the efforts and contributions of Wide Bay Hospital & Health Service chair Peta Jamieson and Adrian Pennington.”
The Mayor's petition says a new hospital would deliver benefits including:
- Employment of skilled medical professionals in the Bundaberg Region which will attract new residents, help to retain existing professionals and deliver local economic benefits;
- Develop medical training capability;
- Invigorate construction activity, boost employment and attract other investment.