New look for med­i­cal cen­tre

Newslink - - NEWS - By RACHAEL KELLY

Pa­tients at the Gore Med­i­cal Cen­tre will have ac­cess to more health ser­vices when the build­ing is up­graded in com­ing months.

A long-awaited up­grade to the cen­tre’s 45-year-old build­ing in Ec­cles St will in­clude a new and larger re­cep­tion area, an ex­tra con­sul­ta­tion room, a new lab­o­ra­tory and bet­ter wheel­chair ac­cess.

Gore Med­i­cal Cen­tre nurse man­ager Ali­son Wilden said the up­grade would give the cen­tre more room to pro­vide more nurse-led clin­ics.

‘‘We will be able to run more asthma, di­a­betes and sex­ual health clin­ics.’’

A re­con­fig­u­ra­tion in­side the build­ing had been in the plan­ning stages for sev­eral years af­ter the cen­tre di­rec­tors – gen­eral prac­ti­tion­ers Glenys Weir, Werner Pohl and Jochen Cle­mens — de­cided to up­grade rather than move to a larger build­ing.

‘‘There are two things that have driven it. One is main­te­nance - the build­ing hasn’t had much done to it since it was built [in 1969] so we can up­grade the hot and cold wa­ter sys­tems and dec­o­rate, and we’re try­ing to re­con­fig­ure the build­ing so it will work bet­ter for us and we can deliver our ser­vices,’’ Wilden said.

‘‘Changes in health­care are hap­pen­ing all the time and we need to be able to adapt quickly to be able to pass ben­e­fits on to pa­tients.’’

Two new staff mem­bers would be em­ployed to work in the new re­cep­tion area, in­creas­ing staff num­bers to 27.

‘‘There will only be re­cep­tion­ists at the counter, the phones will be in the back of­fice so the re­cep­tion­ists will be able to deal with pa­tients a lot faster and there will be in­creased pri­vacy.’’

The cen­tre is pri­vately owned and re­ceived about half of its in­come from the South­ern District Health Board, which al­lowed the cen­tre to pro­vide sub­sidised doc­tors vis­its.

The up­grade would be funded by the di­rec­tors, who would not dis­close the to­tal cost.

Work be­gan a fort­night ago and was ex­pected to be fin­ished in De­cem­ber.

‘‘It will be a bit of a mis­sion in the mean­time. Pa­tients need to be aware of changes to en­try to the build­ing in the next few months but we’ll be keep­ing them up to date on our Face­book page and web­site,’’ Wilden said.


Build­ing starts: Amal­ga­mated Builders site fore­man Michael Walker and Gore Med­i­cal Cen­tre nurse man­ager Ali­son Wilden dis­cuss the cen­tre up­grade, which will be com­pleted in De­cem­ber.

Com­ing soon: An artists’ im­pres­sion of the new re­cep­tion area at the Gore Med­i­cal Cen­tre, which will be com­pleted in De­cem­ber.

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