Ramsay Health Care is set to create hundreds of new jobs in Western Australia, fuelling the nation’s fastest-growing employment sector through delivery of new services and cutting-edge facilities driven by demand.
Australia’s Industry Employment Projections 2019 report shows the health care and social assistance sector is set to outpace all other type of work, expected to grow 15 per cent or 252,600 people nation-wide by 2024. It has been the primary provider of new jobs in the Australian labour market since the 1990s.
Ramsay Health Care’s flagship private WA operation, Hollywood Private Hospital adjoining the State’s premier health precinct at QEII Medical Centre site, is set to be a major source of jobs growth as it nears completion of a significant expansion in bed numbers with future growth planning already underway.
Chief Executive Officer Peter Mott said the opening of the hospital’s new Emergency Department – the first private facility of its type north of the Swan River – marked the final stage of a five-year, $200 million expansion which will take the hospital from 738 licensed beds to a total of 950 including a shelled ward built to cater for future demand.
Construction on the ED started in May and a “topping out” ceremony is planned by contractor Georgiou towards the end of the year. Based on current progress, the ED is scheduled to open in the second half of 2021.
“Since acquiring Hollywood as a 300 bed hospital in 1994, the population of Perth has increased by 50 per cent. We have more than trebled bed numbers in the subsequent 26 years.”
“This year we significantly expanded our mental health services including a 31 bed ward and a new building for our day program services,” Mr Mott said.
Demand for the new mental health inpatient beds exceeded expectations, reflecting a broader community increase in demand for services which coincided with the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We suspected there was an existing underlying demand for these types of services, and that was brought to the fore by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The new facilities included in the expansion will facilitate a partnership between Ramsay and Genesis Care to create Western Australia’s first private one-stop shop for cancer care through the provision of on-site radiation oncology services.
“What we know is our patients are living with cancer for longer as survival rates improve. That means patients who come to Hollywood for treatment for cancer are likely to have a longer relationship with us, and may require different types of support.”
The changing profile of patients has created new types of jobs. Hollywood has introduced a new Cancer Care Navigation service, which provides patients with access to a dedicated senior registered nurse who guides them through various aspects of cancer treatment – from initial diagnosis to treatment and survivorship.
“The future of work in health includes technology – many of our surgeons across a range of speciality areas work with robotics. Automation is already commonplace with our food delivery robots in use across the hospital. Increasingly, artificial intelligence has a place in health care and I expect it will particularly impact services such as radiology and pathology,” Mr Mott said.
“In our experience, with each technology advancement introduced, a new role involving face-to-face care is created that responds to our aging population,” Mr Mott said.
“Our experience reflects the State Government’s Future Jobs, Future Skills strategy which predicts an increase in new types of jobs with a higher order of skills as automation and technology becomes prevalent across multiple sectors.”
Ramsay is also undertaking a $256.7 million expansion at its public facility at Joondalup Health Campus, funded by the State Government, with a contribution from the Commonwealth of $158 million.
Over the lifespan of this five-year project and beyond, hundreds of local jobs will be created – both during construction and longer-term with the extra health and support roles needed to run the expanded facility.
In the Peel region, which is among Australia’s fastest growing populations and also faces high rate of unemployment and an aging population, Ramsay has submitted market-led proposal to the State Government to substantially expand Peel Health Campus, the details of which are commercial-in-confidence.