Hos­pi­tal loses up­grade funds

Canning Times - - NEWS - Jaime Shurmer

TEN mil­lion dol­lars ear­marked for the re­de­vel­op­ment of Bentley Hos­pi­tal was qui­etly passed to Royal Perth Hos­pi­tal’s fire needs in the re­cent State Bud­get.

De­spite be­ing on the same page of the State Bud­get as the re­cently an­nounced $5 mil­lion ro­bot­ics sys­tem at Fiona Stan­ley for prostate surg­eries, nei­ther Can­ning­ton MLA Bill John­ston nor the Aus­tralian Med­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion seemed to know about the gov­ern­ment’s in­ten­tion to re­al­lo­cate the money when the Can­ning Times started ask­ing ques­tions.

Page 180 of bud­get pa­per No. 3 states: “A to­tal of $10 mil­lion has been re­al­lo­cated from the Bentley Hos­pi­tal re­de­vel­op­ment project to meet pri­or­ity fire safety needs at Royal Perth Hos­pi­tal. The ex­ist­ing fa­cil­i­ties at Bentley will re­main fully func­tional and able to meet clin­i­cal ser­vice de­liv­ery re­quire­ments with­out com­pro­mis­ing pa­tient, staff or vis­i­tor safety”.

When asked how the $10 mil­lion was to be used, a spokes­woman for the East

Metro Health Ser­vice, which over­sees the hos­pi­tal, said the money was not specif­i­cally al­lo­cated to any par­tic­u­lar work at Bentley Hos­pi­tal.

“Rather, that money was pre­vi­ously al­lo­cated as a pro­vi­sional amount to be spent at Bentley Hos­pi­tal, pend­ing the out­come of a scope of works which would have been devel­oped in a busi­ness case fol­low­ing con­sul­ta­tion with all stake­hold­ers through var­i­ous project work­ing groups,” she said.

“How­ever, that busi­ness case is yet to be devel­oped or con­sul­ta­tion started. The de­vel­op­ment would have be in line with the Clin­i­cal Ser­vices Frame­work 2014-2024.

“The re­al­lo­cated $10 mil­lion will be spent at Royal Perth Hos­pi­tal for var­i­ous up­grades or ad­di­tional sup­ply of fire safety needs.”

Can­ning­ton MLA Bill John­ston said he had met the chief ex­ec­u­tive and chair of EMHS about their fu­ture plans for the hos­pi­tal and said it was a very ef­fi­cient hos­pi­tal.

A spokes­woman for Health Min­is­ter Roger Cook’s of­fice said the State Gov­ern­ment stood by its com­mit­ments made in Op­po­si­tion and would ad­dress these projects in fu­ture bud­gets.

Op­po­si­tion Leader Mike Na­han felt it was “un­be­liev­ably hyp­o­crit­i­cal” of the gov­ern­ment to strip money from the hos­pi­tal in its first Bud­get.

Money ear­marked for Bentley Hos­pi­tal has been moved.

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