Mildura Base Public Hospital (MBPH) has taken the first steps towards the construction of a new hospital with the announcement of $2 million in funding by the Andrew’s Government in last week’s State Budget.

The masterplan process is expected to take up to 12 months and will be undertaken by the Victorian Health Building Authority (VHBA).

MBPH CEO Terry Welch said the Government’s Budget announcement was a major “vote of confidence” in the hospital Board and administration.

“The masterplan funding is a vote of confidence in what our Board and we as the management, and staff, have been doing in the past eight months at Mildura Base Public Hospital (MBPH) since returning to public management,” Mr Welch said.

“The masterplan will establish the capital pathway forward for MBPH to ensure we have a state-of-the-art facility for our 1000-plus staff who every day continually inspire me in the commitment and level of care they provide to the community we serve.
“As the biggest employer in Sunraysia and the lead health care agency for this region, we have been very focused on re-connecting with the community and other organisations, including the many other fantastic health care groups who serve this region.
“We are in a very unique space given we are a tri-State service, servicing not only the Northern Mallee of Victoria, but also parts of South Australia and New South Wales.
“It is a big and vast area we cover, and to now have the funding from the Victorian Government to undertake the Masterplan for a new hospital is just a huge tick for us as an organisation – it shows we are on the right path in what we are trying to achieve and the services we are delivering.”

Mr Welch said part of the VHBA would undertake a comprehensive assessment and investigation to determine the scale of a new hospital for Mildura.

“We don’t have money to build a new building yet – and I really want to emphasise that,” Mr Welch said.

“The assessment by the building authority will determine whether or not they think they can rejuvenate what we have – investing a lot of money on our current site – or they agree that we need a greenfield site.
“They’ll work out how much physical space we need from a building point of view and then, with architects and specialists, they’ll design a hospital to accommodate that level of service.”