Page 2214 - Week 08 - Tuesday, 4 August 2015

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MR CORBELL: I thank Dr Bourke for his supplementary question. We have an excellent range of additional projects coming through the health infrastructure pipeline. In particular, it is worthy to note that the Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service recently received a $1.3 million grant from the government to extend their Narrabundah premises. This will provide for the construction of additional facilities so that they can meet demand, and it will also provide for jobs in the construction sector. Equally, construction on the new central sterilising services project is expected to commence in the coming year, with completion due in late 2017 or early 2018.

The University of Canberra public hospital is also moving ahead. Construction on this facility is expected to start early next year. This is a very important investment in health infrastructure and will sustain hundreds of jobs in the construction sector during its development stage. Finally, it is worth highlighting work on the Ngunnawal bush healing farm. Preliminary works are now close to completion in relation to this essential facility that will establish a dedicated Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander alcohol and other drug residential rehabilitation service, again supporting jobs and investment in our city as well as improving health infrastructure for all Canberrans.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Dr Bourke.

DR BOURKE: Minister, would you please outline how the investments in the health infrastructure program have improved the care available to Canberrans?

MR CORBELL: Thank you, Dr Bourke, for your supplementary. Yes, you are right to highlight that the health infrastructure program is improving the care available for Canberrans when they need it most. Take, for example, the Canberra Region Cancer Centre. We have seen almost 30,000 occasions of service for cancer patients since its opening in August last year. The centre now employs over 400 oncologists, radiologists, nurses, support staff and technicians. The Centenary Hospital for Women and Children began offering services in 2012. This is providing staffing in the hundreds, who are every day caring for women and children in their time of need. More than 9,000 births have occurred at the centre since it opened.

We have upgraded and completely replaced the adult mental health unit. This has provided for a modern, state-of-the-art facility that is much more conducive to caring for those who have acute mental illness and other mental health problems and focusing on providing them with a supportive and safe environment whilst they go through their recovery. We have built the brand-new Gungahlin Community Health Centre, which is providing a fantastic range of services in the growing district of Gungahlin.

It is worth highlighting another great service that has commenced operation in recent weeks, which is the new renal dialysis service at the Tuggeranong health centre. This is the first time we have provided dedicated dialysis services in the Tuggeranong valley. It is a great new service for the Tuggeranong valley. It means that more people who live in the south can get the dialysis care they need closer to home, reducing their journey time, in modern, contemporary, clean and very welcome facilities with state-of-the-art equipment for those patients. (Time expired.)

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