$3M to finish emergency department upgrade at Mount Barker Hospital
The Mount Barker District Soldiers' Memorial Hospital has secured the extra $3 million needed to complete much-needed upgrades to its Emergency Department (ED) thanks to the advocacy of local Federal MP Rebekha Sharkie.
The funding was announced in yesterday's Federal Government Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook and follows meetings with State health officials and urgent representations to the Health Minister Greg Hunt.
"I would like to thank the Minister for listening to the needs of our rapidly growing community in the Mount Barker region and allocating the additional $3 million needed to finish necessary upgrades to the hospital,” Rebekha said today.
“Back in 2019, the Government promised $8.6 million to expand the existing ED but it soon became apparent that the region was growing much faster than the original population projection and more would need to be done to ensure the accident and emergency department meets the needs of our community.
"The extra $3 million will allow for greater capacity in the new emergency care area as well as the refurbishment of the existing ED into additional clinical spaces.
"The health network will now have the funds to set up a three-bed, short-stay unit in the ED to manage patient flow and reduce transfers to metropolitan hospitals.
"I am also advised that the hospital will convert the former ED into a new Day of Surgical Admission (DOSA) unit which will significantly increase capacity for elective day surgery at the hospital.
“I would like to thank the State and Federal Governments for their co-operation in this matter.
"This hospital serves a growing population of more than 38,500 people in the immediate region. That figure is forecast to grow to 56,710 people by 2036 and we know that the recent boom in housing demand is driving up projected population growth.
"We need an ED that is fit for purpose, that can manage patient flow and reduce transfers to metropolitan hospitals."