Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and MP Glenn Butcher talk to nurse Liz Bellas in the new Gladstone Hospital $42 million emergency department. Picture: Rodney Stevens
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and MP Glenn Butcher talk to nurse Liz Bellas in the new Gladstone Hospital $42 million emergency department. Picture: Rodney Stevens

Future growth: Gladstone hospital to continue upgrades

GLADSTONE Hospital will get an intensive care unit which will involve it being upgraded to a level four facility, says MP Glenn Butcher.

While touring the hospital’s new $42 million emergency department, the Regional Development and Manufacturing Minister said the construction wasn’t finished yet.

“We’ve always said at the Gladstone Hospital that we will work towards a stage four hospital,” he said.

“We’ve now also made an investment in the Mater Hospital purchase under Queensland Health.

“We are taking steps to get to that next stage.”

Mr Butcher said it would take some time to meet peoples expectations for the hospital.

“These things take a fair bit of time,” he said.

“We are going to put out a road map, which will put in place what those steps are, on how we get to an ICU and a stage four hospital.

“Queensland Health has said all the way along, Gladstone will get to the stage four hospital that it deserves.

“But we also need the growth of patients and people in the Gladstone region as well.”

Work is in progress and the community will be informed of any news.

“We will set out a road map and we will make sure that the people of Gladstone know about it,” he said.

“We will make sure that we get to stage four, over a period of time.

“The Central Queensland Hospital and Health Service has set a road map till 2030.

“I would envisage that the road map for this hospital matches that vision.”

Staffing for the new emergency department is being finalised, CQHHS executive director Sandy Munro said.

“We have some senior medical staff for the hospital that will come from within Queensland,” she said.

“A lot of our medical workforce we do recruit from Australia, but there are overseas applicants.

“We do know with the overseas applicants at the moment there are some restrictions.”

The new recruits bring a wide range of skills.

“So we have medical staff of senior and junior levels, we’ve got nurse practitioners, associate nurse managers and clinical nurse staff,” she said.

“We’ve got allied health staff, so physio, speech pathology, dietitian, to support not only the emergency department but the rest of the organisation as well.

“Plus we also have operational staff.”

Due to the size of the new ED, additional staff had to be recruited.

“This is a much larger footprint than the old facility,” Ms Munro said.

“So we needed additional cleaners and security staff, so we’ve got a broad range of staff.

“We are definitely committed to recruited from our local teams.”

The nursing, medical staff and operational staff will all be finalised by August 5, with the opening of the entire ED to be staged.