Renewed push for upgrade

Health Minister Jill Hennessy and Manager of perioperative services Tony Kelly. Picture: Vicky Hughson

Health Minister Jill Hennessy and Manager of perioperative services Tony Kelly. Picture: Vicky Hughson

Momentum for funding for Warrnambool Base Hospital’s $112 million stage two redevelopment was boosted on Friday as Health Minister Jill Hennessy toured the facility.

Ms Hennessy, in Warrnambool for the official opening of the South West Regional Cancer Centre, said she had not come to make a funding announcement but picked up on issues.

“The emergency department clearly has some limitations,” she said. “One of the things that people were keen to talk to me about, and I was keen to see first-hand, was how people are operating the emergency department at the moment and to hear a little bit about their vision about how it might operate in the future.”

Ms Hennessy chatted with staff about their work.

“I’m absolutely committed to going back and to having a think about what might be a way forward to ensure the needs of this local community are being met” she said. “There’s nothing like a good direct personal experience to see and feel and help you better understand what those needs are.”

South West Healthcare chief executive officer John Krygger said it was a “wonderful opportunity” to have the minister tour the hospital facilities.

“We showcased to her what our spatial constraints are and how it’s limiting patient flow within the organisation and she was very, very encouraging in our efforts to continue to prosecute the case for the redevelopment of stage two,” he said.

Ms Hennessy also visited hospitals in Port Fairy and Terang during her trip.

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