Member for Mayo Rebekha Sharkie has written successfully to the Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt urging him to to consider a priority infrastructure project at the South Coast District Hospital to be released as soon as possible.
More than $8.4 million was promised in early 2019 by the Federal Government through its Community Health and Hospitals Program.
The funds were to be released to the State Government over a period of three years, commencing in 2022/2023, but now the funding will commence in 2020/21.
Spokesperson for the Minister for Health Greg Hunt said the Australian and South Australian Governments have already agreed to commence funding for this project in 2020-21," the spokesperson said.
Ms Sharkie said it was an important issue and the stimulus is needed now for the South Coast District Hospital.
"The project serves to not only enhance the health care capabilities of the region in the face of the COVID-19 Pandemic, but to also stimulate the economy through this significant project," Ms Sharkie said.
The funding at the South Coast District Hospital in Victor Harbor will help the expansion of acute care facilities such as renal dialysis, which will take some pressure off the hospital's emergency department, enabling more timely transfer of patients requiring admission from ED and freeing up limited treatment spaces.
Member for Finniss David Basham said the Federal Government was not only following through on its 2019 election commitment as expected, but bringing the $8.4 million in funding forward to expand acute care at the South Coast District Hospital and develop a new renal dialysis unit.
"Since 2015 there's been a 30 per cent increase in presentations at the hospital's emergency department. Expanding acute care facilities will take pressure of the emergency department, enabling the more timely transfer of patients requiring admission from the emergency department and freeing up limited treatment spaces," Mr Basham said.
"The staged development of the ward wing will provide up to eight more beds to support patients of varying age and clinical need, such as infectious isolation and bariatric care, while the new six-chair renal dialysis unit (four existing chairs and two new ones) at the Southern Fleurieu Health Service will reduce waiting lists for the treatment.
"This development will enable more patients to be cared for at the hospital, closer to their home, reducing ambulance transfers to hospitals in Adelaide. It's a fantastic outcome for communities on the Fleurieu Peninsula."
The Federal Government's Community Health and Hospitals Program supports better patient care while reducing pressure on community and hospital services.
The program aims to provide more doctors, nurses and services in Mayo and throughout South Australia.