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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 04 Hansard (Tuesday, 24 March 2015) . . Page.. 1038 ..

The delivery is part of improving healthcare services for Canberrans, in particular shifting subacute service provision away from our tertiary and high care treatment hospital campuses at both the Canberra Hospital and, to a lesser degree, Calvary public, and instead providing a dedicated, purpose-built facility to meet the needs of a growing and ageing population.

In addition to the clinical services that it will provide, it will provide important opportunities for growth and development at the University of Canberra itself.

First of all, we know that the University of Canberra has a critical role in training healthcare professionals, in particular allied health professionals and nursing professionals. The co-location at the University of Canberra will ensure that the health care delivered and the options available to Canberrans will be delivered in a very timely and effective way but also in a way that leverages the expertise available at the University of Canberra itself.

The University of Canberra is a leading and growing tertiary institution for our city. This government, unlike those opposite, wants to invest in growing and strengthening the university, in collaboration with delivering better healthcare options for the Canberra community.

This project meets both of those aims. There is clearly a need in our community for coordinated care. The co-location of a range of rehabilitation and subacute care facilities on one site in a purpose-built facility creates the opportunity for a rehabilitation centre of excellence. This co-location also offers the opportunity to provide cohesive, robust and clearly defined service models.

Let us look at some of the services that this new facility is going to be providing to the Canberra community—hydrotherapy, psychiatric rehabilitation, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech pathology, exercise pathology, social work and structured psychological therapies. These are really important services, and for the first time they will be brought together in one location. In bringing them together, we are also making an investment in and giving confidence about the future growth of the University of Canberra itself. Co-location of health services with academic tertiary training is very important. (Time expired.)

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Dr Bourke.

DR BOURKE: Minister, how does the University of Canberra public hospital improve access to health care for Canberra’s ageing population?

MR CORBELL: I thank Dr Bourke for the supplementary. The ageing of our population is critical. The number of people over the age of 65 will double between now and about 2065. So we have an enormous total of older Canberrans that we are going to need to make sure that collectively, as a community, we provide the services and facilities for well into the future. The University of Canberra public hospital is part of the government’s response to that emerging issue. The delivery of subacute facilities in areas like rehabilitation, geriatric care and mental health services is critical for an ageing population.

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