Intensive care treatment rooms for tiny babies and children will be bigger in the new children’s hospital and have views of Kings Park.
Health Minister Kim Hames gave media a tour of a replica future neonatal intensive care unit and paediatric intensive care unit this morning to mark one year since construction of the $1.2 billion Nedlands project started.
Dr Hames said parents with sick children liked staying with them for as long as possible and the new facilities available from 2015 would allow them to stay 24 hours a day if required.
The number of beds will have 274 beds, 23 more than the existing Princess Margaret Hospital, with a greater emphasis on single rooms.
Neonatal intensive care units will increase in size from 10sqm to 12sqm to up to 16sqm and increase from four single rooms to 10.
Paediatric intensive care units will increase in size from 10 to 12sqm to up to 25sqm and grow from three single rooms to 16.
Dr Hames said the future units would have views of Kings Park.
“It gives a much better ambience for children so that they can heal in a great environment and a great atmosphere,” he said.
“It can be a scary place being in hospital as a child.
“(The increased room size) is about how a child feels in bed, the ambience of the room, the ability of doctors and other staff to move freely throughout the room without cramping the child, and it creates the ability to have a parent space as well.”
Health Department child and adolescent health service governing council chairwoman Rosanna Capolingua described the future units as a “quantum leap” from existing facilities.
“You have to admire the medical and nursing staff that have been working at PMH,” she said.
“They have expanded sometimes even into closets and storage rooms to make sure they can give the kids of WA the ongoing increasing care that is needed with the increasing population.”
Shadow health minister Roger Cook accused the Government of re-announcing projects “at a time when health services are deteriorating”.
He said the Government was simply implementing Labor’s long term agenda for the health system following the Reid Review it commissioned when last in power.