Anonymous funding for hospital upgrade

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Upgrade planned: Lakes District Hospital

Detailed plans are being prepared for the upgrade of Frankton’s Lakes District Hospital, although building work is not expected to start until the end of the year.

The community representative on the steering group overseeing the upgrade, Tony Hill, says the first phase is the creation of a whanau room, where family members of critically or terminally ill patients could stay overnight.

The room, which received anonymous funding, would be a “fantastic asset” for the hospital. He expects construction to start by the end of the year, once planning and pricing is completed and consents are granted.

In announcing the upgrade last August, the Southern District Health Board said the project would cost “some millions” and meet the district’s needs for the next decade.

It will include the installation of a CT scanner and ultrasound services, reconfiguration of the emergency department and refurbishment of the maternity ward and other ward areas.

RCP Project Management was appointed as project manager in December.

Hill says telemedicine facilities had been installed in the hospital’s clinical area and were being extended to other departments.

He was pleased with last week’s announcement by Remarkables Park Ltd and Skin Institute Queenstown of their plans for a $30 million private medical facility in Hawthorne Dr.

“Anything that’s enhancing facilities within the district is great.”

Otago Daily Times