16/12/2019 - 09:27

Government pledges $96m for Joondalup Health Campus

16/12/2019 - 09:27

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The state government has pledged $96 million to expand Joondalup Health Campus, with Health Minister Roger Cook repudiating assertions the amount falls short of election commitments.

Government pledges $96m for Joondalup Health Campus
Roger Cook said the addition of an urgent care clinic would provide an appropriate place to treat drug and alcohol affected patients. Photo: Attila Csaszar

The state government has pledged $96 million to expand Joondalup Health Campus, short of an election commitment to provide $167 million.

Announced on Saturday by Health Minister Roger Cook, the funding will go towards adding new beds, operating theatres and emergency departments to the hospital, as well as additional parking bays for public and staff.

The expansion, which is set to commence in mid-2020 and be completed by 2025, will bring the estimated cost of the project to $257 million, which includes federal commitments of $158 million.

Mr Cook said expansion of the campus was needed to meet growing demand in the area, and that it would create jobs for a growing population in Perth’s north.

“The build will start next year and begins with the emergency department and additional staff and public parking,” he said.

“The addition of an Urgent Care Clinic will ease pressure on the busy emergency department at Joondalup and provide a more appropriate place to treat drug and alcohol affected patients.

“The McGowan government is putting patients first and delivering on its election commitment to the residents of Perth’s northern suburbs.”

In response to the announcement, Shadow Health Minister Zak Kirkup said the $96 million pledged for the hospital amounted to a funding cut of 42 per cent, mentioning the state government’s election promise of $167 million for the campus’ expansion.

“The McGowan Labor Government has dragged its feet and it has not only compromised health services in the northern suburbs, but it has also hurt much-needed jobs and apprenticeships for young people in the area,” said Mr Kirkup.

Joondalup Health Campus, which ranks third on the BNiQ list of hospitals with 722 beds, is administered by Ramsay Health Care.

An ASX-listed company, Ramsay also administers Hollywood Private Hospital, which ranks second on the BNiQ list of hospitals with 738 beds.

A spokesperson for Ramsay told Business News they welcomed the state government delivering on an election commitment to build better health services in the northern suburbs.

"The announcement will deliver a much needed expansion in the Emergency Department, Critical Care, Mental Health and specialist facilities, as well as improved car park access," they said.

Further, Mr Cook repudiated Mr Kirkup's assertions that the funding did not meet the state government's 2017 election commitment of $167 million.

“Having pledged $167 million in opposition towards the expansion of Joondalup Hospital, the McGowan government came into office and successfully managed to secure $158 million from the federal government towards this important project," he said.

"Having secured federal funding, the McGowan Government is making sure the expansion will keep pace with the growing needs of the Northern Suburbs by committing to spend $98.7 million, in addition to the federal money, to expand Joondalup Hospital.

"This brings the total cost of the Joondalup Health Campus expansion is $256.7 million and delivers more services than Labor’s election commitment.”

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