Upper Lachlan Shire Council will consider plans for a $2.5 million upgrade of Crookwell District Hospital this March.
Under the plans, a new emergency department and ambulance bay will be built at the front of the hospital.
The emergency department will include two holding bays, a resuscitation bay, an IV dialysis sitting room, a triage assessment room, three public toilets, an emergency shower, a medication room, a staff room and toilet, a reception counter, and a waiting room.
The ground floor east wing, originally built in 1955, will be renovated and extended by 176 square metres to accommodate the new emergency department and ambulance bay.
Paramedics will have direct access into the hospital via an airlock from the ambulance bay, while the public will access the emergency department via an airlock located on the right side of the building, before the existing main entrance.
Hospital administration offices will also be relocated to the first floor to make room for more clinical services on the ground floor.
A Southern NSW Local Health District (SNSWLHD) spokesperson said the project is on track for completion by late 2021.
“The construction contract for the main works will be awarded in late March 2021, with work to commence shortly after,” said the spokesperson.
The Upper Lachlan Shire community is invited to view the plans and meet with the Crookwell District Hospital redevelopment project team at a drop-in session at the Crookwell Wellness Centre on Kialla Road between 4.30 pm and 6.30 pm on Tuesday, 30 March.
So far, there have been no public submissions made against the development, according to an Upper Lachlan Shire spokesperson.
This could be due to the fact the proposed works are largely internal and involve refurbishing existing structures and minor additions contained within the same site.
NSW Health also consulted the council and community before commissioning the plans.
The Crookwell Hospital Community Consultation group says it is happy with the plans.
However, concerns have been expressed about the ability of the two nurses rostered on at night to look after patients in both the emergency department and 18-bed ward, known as the Hutton Wing, which will be located at opposite ends of the hospital after the redevelopment.
Currently, staff can keep an eye on patients in both areas as they are next door to each other.
“Staffing and security arrangements are in the process of being reviewed in order to ensure the appropriate model is adopted,” said the SNSWLHD spokesperson.
The $2.5 million funding from the NSW Government will also be used to upgrade medical equipment, including ECG machines, a defibrillator and a transport ventilator at the hospital, as well as a new floor in the Hutton Wing.
The funding has also been used to upgrade the Crookwell Wellness Centre next door to the hospital, which included a new kitchen, new floors, an upgrade to the shower facility, widening of doors to improve access, and external ramp access, which was completed in December 2020.
Munns Sly Moore Architects said there will be a need for local services and labour during construction.