12 December 2014
The Independent Member for Denison, Andrew Wilkie, has commented on the State Government’s decision to proceed with the rebuild of the Royal Hobart Hospital on the current site.
“I support the Government’s decision to proceed with the rebuild of the Royal Hobart Hospital, with modifications, on the current site,’’ Mr Wilkie said.
“I am also confident that the enhanced rebuild plan will deliver a first-rate hospital as quickly and affordably as possible. Altering the construction methodology reduces construction and scheduling risks to an acceptable level, while the new decanting plan greatly reduces the clinical risk to patients to an acceptable level.
“That this project is so far behind schedule and over budget reflects very poorly on the previous Labor government. But that’s history, the challenge now is to get the job done and I’m confident the State Government’s plan has the potential to achieve that.
“The Health Minister Michael Ferguson and the Rescue Task Force led by John Ramsey have done a good job to recover the situation. I will be keeping a very close eye on the Government to try and help ensure it doesn’t stuff it up from here.
“While I was open-minded about alternative courses of action, my reservations about a new hospital at the Cenotaph have been found to be entirely warranted. As attractive as that proposal is at first glance, in my opinion it did not withstand close scrutiny from governance, scheduling, financial and legislative perspectives.’’
Mr Wilkie was a member of the RHH Rescue Task Force’s Professional Reference Group that also included Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation Tasmania secretary Neroli Ellis, Master Builders Tasmania executive director Michael Kerschbaum and a representative from the Australian Medical Association.
Mr Wilkie secured $340m in federal funds for the RHH redevelopment following the 2010 election and another $325m for the Tasmanian health system in 2012.