While it’s more than two years ago since State Member for Barwon Kevin Humphries announced a new multi-purpose health service (MPS) could be on the cards for Cobar, the concept is still only at the planning stage.
Western NSW Local Health District communications manager for MPS projects Kylie Neville said Cobar’s new health service would be unique.
“The complexities of Cobar’s proposed new multi-purpose health service have required extensive planning to ensure this new and innovative model will meet Cobar’s future health needs,” Ms Neville said.
The new service will co-locate the existing Residential Aged Care (LBV) with a new Health Service that will be built on vacant adjacent land.
Ms Neville said the planning process is progressing and several meetings were held in Cobar recently with health service staff, Lilliane Brady Village (LBV) staff and Cobar Shire Council.
The meetings had a focus on the design development of the individual rooms and areas that will form the new integrated service.
“Design development is an important step in the detailed planning stage of the project, and follows the community consultation meetings held in early December where the overall schematic design for the new integrated service was unveiled to the community,” Ms Neville explained.
She said the feedback received on the overall design following the consultation meetings has been incorporated into the project plans, specifically on the extensions to the LBV.
“Additional meetings are planned over the coming weeks to further develop the design,” she said.
“Discussions are continuing with the local GPs and other relevant stakeholders about the inclusion of a GP clinic in the new integrated Cobar Health Service.
“Community feedback on this option has been positive, considering the benefits of co-location with other services such as Medical Imaging, and Primary Community and Allied Health.
“Feedback from the GPs has also been
incorporated into the plans for the GP clinic within the new integrated Cobar Health Service.”
Ms Neville said work is also continuing to develop the commercial agreement for a private provider to manage the residential aged care component of the new integrated Cobar Health Service.
“The redevelopment project includes scope for building additional aged care rooms, as well as reconfiguring some of the existing aged care rooms, and other minor improvements,” she said.
Ms Neville said the project team appreciates the patience the community, the hospital and LBV staff have shown during the planning process, and for providing valuable feedback on the plans.
“Planning is due for completion later in 2017, and once the appropriate approvals have been gained the project will move into the delivery stage,” Ms Neville explained.
“The commencement of the delivery phase of the project, including procurement for construction, is also dependent on construction funding being allocated from the MPS Program which is announced in the NSW Budget annually.”
More information on the redevelopment of the Cobar Health Service can be found at www.mps.health.nsw.gov.au and an information board is also on display in the public area of Cobar Hospital.