Northam Hospital will undergo a $46.1million upgrade as part of a $325.8million boost to health infrastructure across southern Western Australia, funded by the State Government’s Royalties for Regions program.
Health Minister Kim Hames and Regional Development Minister Terry Redman will visit Northam, Merredin, Narrogin, Katanning, Collie and Manjimup to announce funding for individual projects carried out under the Government’s Royalties for Regions-funded $565million Southern Inland Health Initiative (SIHI).
Dr Hames said the upgraded Northam Hospital would provide a comprehensive and greatly expanded emergency department to provide modern, well-equipped emergency services at Northam.
“The facility will also provide a single point of patient access to health services such as physiotherapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy, counselling, community health nursing, community mental health and aged-care support,” Dr Hames said.
“Northam Hospital had initially been flagged to receive a $36.6million upgrade under SIHI, however project cost savings mean the community will now benefit from additional improvements.”
Mr Redman said SIHI was the biggest health investment in regional WA and the upgrades to Northam Hospital would provide high levels of service self-sufficiency and help build a more robust healthcare service in the region.
“Royalties for Regions funding through SIHI aims to address gaps in healthcare for the ongoing sustainability and increased prosperity across the southern half of the State,” Mr Redman said.
“Northam and surrounding communities will now be able to receive a modern and contemporary health service closer to home.”
The Australian Government is contributing $5.5million towards the new renal and cancer services at Northam Hospital.
While the tender process will determine the specific timeline for the project, it is expected the upgrade of Northam Hospital will start in the second half of 2015, and take about two years to complete.
SIHI will deliver infrastructure improvements to 36 towns in the southern inland region of WA.
The $325.8million investment will involve upgrades to six district hospitals totalling $173.7million, as well as an additional $108.8million for upgrades and refurbishment of small hospitals and nursing posts. A further $43.3million has been allocated towards fit-for-purpose healthcare facilities that focus on the promotion of good health, prevention and early detection of illness, with the first two sites in Pingelly and Cunderdin under way.
Health Minister’s office - 6552 5300
Regional Development Minister’s office - 6552 6700