Thursday, August 24, 2023
Mackay and Whitsunday Life
In a significant development for healthcare in the region, the tender for the Mackay Base Hospital Expansion has been awarded to BESIX Watpac. The $250 million expansion project aims to provide an additional 128 beds, catering to the growing demand for healthcare services. This expansion is part of the State Government's ambitious Queensland Health and Hospitals Plan, which has seen substantial investments in new hospitals and increased bed capacity across the state.
Last week, Shannon Fentiman, the incoming Health Minister, visited Mackay Base Hospital to announce the appointment of BESIX Watpac as the lead contractor for the expansion project. The project will encompass paediatric, medical, and surgical wards, effectively equipping frontline hospital workers with the necessary facilities to meet the rising demand for healthcare in the region. Additionally, the expansion will ensure that Mackay residents have convenient access to a comprehensive range of health services closer to home.
Minister Shannon Fentiman expressed her gratitude to the dedicated healthcare professionals and highlighted the significance of the expansion.
"I'm honoured to visit our hardworking frontline health workers on the ground here in Mackay and thank them for all they do,” Minister Fentiman said.
“We are one step closer to delivering this important capital project as we welcome BESIX Watpac onboard as the lead contractor.”
Julianne Gilbert, Member for Mackay, hailed the announcement as a positive development for the community and the wider region.
"This is an exciting announcement for my community and the surrounding region,” Mrs Gilbert said.
“This is a great step forward not only for Mackay but also for the wider communities of Proserpine, Bowen, Collinsville, Dysart, Moranbah, Clermont, and Sarina.
“We future-proofed the hospital, ensuring sufficient land was available to expand. Once again there will be views of the beautiful Pioneer River and Bluewater Trail for our patients and staff."
Dr. Charles Pain, Interim Chief Executive of Mackay Hospital and Health Service, emphasised the importance of meeting the growing demand for healthcare.
"These additional 128 beds will help us meet the rising demand for healthcare in the region and improve the flow of patients from the emergency department to the wards,” he said.
“The existing facility has served us well for decades, but as our community continues to grow, it's imperative that our hospital grows with it.
“The Women's Health Unit and the Child and Adolescent Unit are looking forward to moving into brand new wards, and this will ensure care is provided in a contemporary environment,” Dr Pain added.
“The location of birth suites on the same level as the surgical department will also allow for a smoother transition of care for some birthing women."
The Mackay Base Hospital Expansion project is expected to create 610 local construction jobs, providing an economic boost to the area. The project is scheduled for completion in the second half of 2026, marking a significant milestone in enhancing healthcare services and meeting the evolving needs of the Mackay community.
• BESIX Watpac has been awarded the tender to deliver the Mackay Base Hospital Expansion.
• The $250 million expansion will deliver an additional 128 beds to support healthcare for the region.
• The project is scheduled for completion in the second half of 2026.