Casey Hospital

Ms GRALEY — My adjournment matter is for the Minister for Health and concerns Casey Hospital in my electorate. The action I seek is for the minister to visit Casey Hospital to discuss the Andrews Labor government’s fantastic commitment to expand the hospital.

The Baillieu and Napthine governments promised to fix our health system. They promised to reduce elective surgery waiting times, open 800 new hospital beds — we still have not found them — and improve access to the health system for all Victorians. We know that not one of these promises was kept, not a single one. Instead savage cuts were made to our health system, leaving hospitals just like Casey Hospital at breaking point.

Casey Hospital was built by Labor and during the 2010 election campaign we committed
to expanding it, a commitment that the Liberals refused to match in opposition or in government. This is despite Casey Hospital servicing one of the fastest growing areas in the state. In 2013 the hospital admitted 38 000 patients and 52 620 people attended the emergency department. No wonder local residents were often forced to wait for hours in the emergency department before receiving treatment. This placed great pressure on our hardworking ambulance officers, who had to spend hours ramped outside the hospital. Even the elective surgery waiting list blew out, with over 2000 people waiting for surgery at Casey Hospital.

That is why the local community was really pleased when we announced that this government was going to provide $106.3 million for a major expansion of Casey Hospital. This expansion will ensure that Casey Hospital can provide for 12 000 more patients, 8000 more surgeries and 500 more births. We will build an eight-storey inpatient unit from the ground up, with four new operating theatres, a new elective surgery recovery centre and Casey’s first intensive care unit. The intensive care unit will ensure that local families can get the specialist care they need closer to home.

Ninety six new beds will be opened, with room created for a further 64 beds if required in the future. Computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging services as well as day surgery admissions at Casey Hospital will be expanded. Labor built this hospital and will make it bigger and better. Local families deserve to have access to world-class health care close to home, and that is exactly what the Andrews Labor government will deliver. I invite the Minister for Health to join me in visiting Casey Hospital to discuss the expansion and meet with patients and staff, who will be really thrilled to meet her.