Hospital refurbishment to ‘future proof’ facilities
Timaru Hospital’s $1.4 million ‘future-proofing’ makeover is well underway with a 26 week emergency and outpatient departments refurbishment completed, and work begun on the resuscitation area and ambulance bay at the end of 2019.
The emergency and outpatient departments refurbishments have redeveloped existing space to create more patient care areas, as well as updating the aesthetics in the departments and the main reception area.
Timaru Hospital project manager Simon Johnston says the hospital hadn’t received any major attention since 1996. “It needed to be tidied up and brought into the new century,” he says. “We needed to provide enough clinic space so we can continue to cater for the ever-growing outpatient need of Timaru’s aging population.”
“So, we started looking at how we could rework the existing space to keep it functional,” Simon says. “With the first floor refurbishment complete, the plan now is to continue to rework the existing space up through the remaining four floors at the Timaru Hospital.”
The early stages of the emergency and outpatients redevelopment saw Simon working closely with the departments’ clinical nurse managers and the clerical lead to redesign the space. The design went out for tender in March 2019 and Timaru’s Henderson Building was selected as the project’s main contractor.
Henderson Building completed this project while the emergency and outpatients departments continued to function at full capacity. “We need to say a big thanks to all the hospital staff in the emergency and the outpatient departments for their patience and for working brilliantly alongside Henderson Building and their contractors.”
Now it’s complete, Simon says the refurbished working environment has more patient space, and patients are getting through the triage process smoothly. Simon says the biggest constraint to this project was working within a finite floor space.
“There’s not enough room for what we want to be delivering. Our outpatient clinics provide a range of different services and there are normally two or three different clinics with different needs running at any one time. Getting all of that together was the biggest issue through design, and we are now designing an extension to the outpatients department which will provide another two consulting rooms and five fast track beds to free up more space for outpatient clinics.”
The extra space for the extension to the outpatients department will be taken from the current drop off zone and the public car parking area, while leaving plenty of mobility car parking spaces.
Timaru Hospital is very fortunate to be surrounded by many free on-street car park spaces, as well as three more free car parks within a block of the hospital.
This second phase of redevelopment will include a new café and main entrance at the Timaru Hospital. The South Canterbury District Health Board will be accepting bids for the second phase of the project in February 2020.
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