NSW Labor commits $225 million to expand Canterbury hospital


A Minns Labor Government will commit $225 million over the next three years to expand and upgrade Canterbury Hospital.

This desperately needed expansion will see an increase in the hospital’s bed capacity, as well as additional services.

Canterbury Hospital has served the community for almost a century, with the hospital’s last major redevelopment taking place 25 years ago.

The hospital services not just patients from the Canterbury area, but St George, Bayside, Inner West and Inner South residents too.

Labor has long campaigned for the redevelopment of Canterbury Hospital, urgently needed as part of a wider structural fix to our healthcare system.

Two years ago, 60 senior doctors wrote an open letter decrying services at Canterbury which they described as “inadequate”, “poorly resourced”, and “shocking”.

Just last month Labor lodged a petition of over 10,000 signatures with the NSW Parliament, calling for this urgently needed redevelopment to proceed.

Ms Sophie Cotsis. Photo supplied.

More beds

The expansion will see at least an additional 120 beds, including more general medical and surgical beds; inpatient mental health beds; ambulatory beds; emergency department treatment spaces; intensive care unit beds; and maternity beds.

The commitment from NSW Labor will also deliver additional operating theatres and birthing rooms.

More services  

Local residents can also expect more services available at the hospital – both an expansion of existing services as well as the introduction of new services.

With 25 years since it’s last upgrade, Canterbury Hospital currently has no renal dialysis, and cuts have been made to palliative care. Existing maternity beds are shared four bed wards that is no longer considered sound clinical practice.

Expectant mothers are reluctant to discuss pregnancy related issues because their ante natal visits are held in an open, crammed room with no privacy.

The funding from NSW Labor will expand the existing maternity services with a whole new maternity department.

Outpatients services will include the full suite of cardiovascular services, diabetes management, endocrinology, respiratory and cardiology.

Labor’s commitment will also deliver renal dialysis services for the first time, at Canterbury Hospital.

And NSW Labor will also introduce a new 20-bed Community Mental Health facility.

Labor’s initial commitment of $225 million will come from the unallocated $3 billion WestInvest Government agencies fund – not the $2 billion allocated to Local Governments and community groups – which under Labor will also have its remit expanded to include urgently needed healthcare projects.

Chris Minns, NSW Labor Leader, said:

“NSW Labor will have a challenge on its hands to turn around 12 years of neglect by the Liberals of our state’s health system.

“This is a hospital that desperately needs an upgrade. In the middle of winter patients were being treated in tents.

“I’m determined to begin to meet the challenge with a comprehensive policy response, that’s not only about boosting staff numbers, but delivering the health infrastructure to go with it.

“I want to also thank and acknowledge the hard working staff at Canterbury Hospital. They have done an extraordinary job in very difficult circumstances particularly over COVID.”

Ryan Park, NSW Shadow Minister for Health, said:

“Today’s announcement represents another component to Labor’s policy response to the Liberals’ health crisis.

“NSW Labor commitment will not only expand the capacity of Canterbury Hospital, but will increase the suite of services available to local residents.”

Sophie Cotsis, NSW Labor Member for Canterbury, said:

“Like so many people in my local community I was born at Canterbury Hospital. We have been fighting for years to get extra funding, but it has never come.

“Anyone who has been to Canterbury Hospital knows it is long overdue for this upgrade and expansion. It’s been 25 years since the last time it’s been redeveloped.

“I am so proud that a Minns Labor Government will deliver on this.”




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