New hospital is amazing
THE closer the new Leongatha Hospital comes to completion, the tackier its predecessor looks.
In a masterstroke of planning, the new facility has been constructed towards the back of the site, overlooking the current buildings.
As a result, there will be as little disruption as possible to patients when they move in sometime during early September.
And when they do, they won’t believe their eyes.
That $32.5 million can build something as remarkably splendid as the new building is jaw dropping.
And yes, you the public will be able to see through it before patients move in.
Gippsland Southern Health Service (GSHS) CEO Gary Templeton isn’t sure how he’s going to orchestrate that yet, but says he’ll find a way.
The site is a hive of activity. Between 70 and 100 tradespeople are there every day, attending to myriad tasks that involve clambering up and down ladders, ducking or stepping over wires and making use of every available advance in modern technology.
Senior project engineer Peter Cook, now happily a local resident, walks around with an iPad. Every room has a sign on the wall denoting its purpose and in the left hand corner is one of those up-to-the-minute squares full of black squiggles. Peter scans that with his iPad as a quick and easy means of recording and keeping on top of any defects in construction or decorating.
Building has reached the stage where the many special features of the facility are becoming obvious.
For example, the day surgery and chemotherapy treatment room has been set up with its own toilet and tea and coffee making facilities. There is a large semi circular bay window looking out onto a courtyard.
Palliative care windows face the peaceful views at the back of the hospital and has a room large enough to accommodate an entire family or a smaller one for those choosing that preference.
Staff persuaded GSHS project manager Mark Withers to buy baths for the birthing rooms of a size that will comfortably cater for water therapy for heavily pregnant women.
Architectural touches such as a circular design on the floor of a waiting room and features on the walls of the hospital’s long corridor are now becoming apparent.
Mr Templeton, who refuses to admit he’s excited about the project, is fascinated by the corridor walls. He has no idea how they will look when they are finished but at the moment they are changing every day.
The operating theatres are taking shape too. They have expensive modern equipment hanging from the ceiling and that’s replicated in a resuscitation room boasting an opaque glass wall and sliding door that becomes see-through at the flick of a switch.
All outer windows are double glazed.
Mr Templeton is proud of a glass walled link between the hospital and Koorooman House which will allow aged care residents to sit and enjoy both the view and watch the world go by. One wall faces the delivery area so there will be people and trucks coming and going during the day, creating interest.
Mr Templeton and administrative staff will be housed in upstairs offices. His room is at one end, commanding a view of the Leongatha township and Mr Withers’ is at the other where he will be able to look out as far as Knox’s Quarry. Respite from staff seminars will be enjoyed from a balcony overlooking farmland.
Work is underway on the new road that will ring the building.
As Mr Templeton himself says, “This is a facility the people of Leongatha need and deserve.”
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