Page 51 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 14 February 2012

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MR SPEAKER: Ms Hunter, a supplementary question.

MS HUNTER: Minister, what assessment has been done of the impact on Watson and Hackett of opening up the new supermarkets and are you able to provide information on the assessment to the Assembly?

MR BARR: The Martin review is available for members to peruse.

Hospitals—women’s and children’s

MS PORTER: My question is to the Chief Minister as the Minister for Health. Chief Minister, can you please outline the progress of the construction of the women’s and children’s hospital?

Opposition members interjecting—

MR SPEAKER: Thank you, members!

MS GALLAGHER: Thank you, Mr Speaker, and I welcome the beginning of the interjections from the opposition. I am sure I will get a few more of them as I work through the question. It is really great to update the Assembly on the women’s and children’s hospital, which is currently under construction at the Canberra Hospital. Stage 1 of the project is progressing very well and by the second half of this year, women, children and babies from the Canberra and broader region will be benefiting from state-of-the-art facilities in a state-of-the-art hospital.

All the services we provide to women and children will be available and operational when stage 1 opens. Patients will be admitted. Babies will be delivered and sick babies will be cared for. This is a very exciting project that will see the co-location of services, including paediatrics, maternity services, the new neonatal intensive care unit for the sickest babies, gynaecology, foetal medicine and specialised outpatient services, in a three-storey facility.

The new hospital will ensure that Canberra’s women and children have access to a single facility for women’s and children’s hospital services. It is one of the nation’s most progressive health projects which will set the benchmark, I believe, for women, paediatric and new born care within Australia.

It will use the latest technology and will position our hospital at the start of its redevelopment as an Australian leader. Significant work has gone into ensuring that we have the best design for this new facility and changes have been made along the way to ensure that we adapt to changes in demand, new technologies and emerging ideas about the way to provide health care.

This is how a good project should be managed. It needs to be flexible and adaptable with a capacity to refocus and change scope along the way to ensure that we provide the most appropriate and most contemporary facilities.

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