Rockhampton Mater Hospital expands with $12m project
IN a game changer for Central Queensland, Rockhampton will soon welcome its first Cardiac Catheter Lab.
The Cardiac Catheter Lab Oncology and Central Sterile Services Department (CSSD) project, costing more than $12 million, is currently underway at the Rockhampton Mater Hospital and projected to be finished in October.
Executive officer Annette Czerkesow said the need for the services to be delivered locally had been there for an "exceptionally” long time, with this particular project on the cards for the hospital for years.
She said the project represented a significant investment into the local community at a time when it was most needed. She praised the Federal Government and Capricornia MP Michelle Landry for the $3 million contribution via the Health and Hospitals Fund Program Regional Priority Initiative.
"Currently there is no other Cardiac Catheter Lab in Rockhampton and at present people needing the services provided by a Cath Lab have to travel away from the city to access this service,” Ms Czerkesow said.
"Once the Cath Lab at the Rockhampton Mater is operational, the need to travel away from Rockhampton, with all the cost and logistical difficulties this entails, will be eliminated and people will be able to access the service locally, which is great news for patients and their families.”
Ms Czerkesow said the Mater would be very keen to work cooperatively with the Central Queensland Hospital and Health Service (CQHHS) to enable patients attending the Rockhampton Base Hospital to access the Cardiac Cath Lab services.
"Having an agreement in place that allows public patients to use the cath lab at the Mater makes such great sense clinically and financially,” Ms Czerkesow said.
"It increases patients through the lab, which would be welcomed by clinicians and eliminates the duplication of infrastructure resources, thus providing significant capital expenditure savings for the CQHHS and the Queensland Government.”
The project is composed of two levels, with the ground floor specially built for oncology patients and non-intervention cardiology.
There is expected to be 11 chairs in the new oncology unit, and one private room.
"We already have oncology but we don't have that many chairs, so this is a purpose built, nurturing environment just for them,” Ms Czerkesow said.
"Direct entry into the oncology unit means the patients will not have to wait at the front desk for admission and can admit directly into the oncology department, which lessens the stress of dealing with potentially different people on the front desk every time they are admitted.”
The tender for the project had been awarded to Griffin Builders, boosting employment in the region and keeping funds in the local community.
WHAT IS IT?
A cath-lab, also known as a cardiac catheterisation laboratory, is part of a hospital's cardiac department - but it shouldn't be confused with an operating theatre.
Cardiac tests and procedures are carried out in the lab, including ablation, angiogram, angioplasty, implantation of pacemakers and defibrillators.