Today marks six months since the Matthew Guy and the Victorian Liberal National Coalition committed to delivering a new West Gippsland Hospital with no sight of Labor matching that commitment or even announcing what it plans to do into the future to grow the service.
August 13 will also mark 1,000 days since Labor announced it would investigate the future needs of health care in the West Gippsland region and while $1m was finally delivered in the 2016-17 Budget to plan for the redevelopment of the Warragul Hospital, no further announcements have been made in over a year about its future.
Local Member for Narracan, Gary Blackwood, said the delay in the Daniel Andrews Labor Government committing to a new West Gippsland Hospital was unnerving for the community and that many in the region believed it was because there was a move by the Government to reduce services or close the hospital by stealth.
‘Daniel Andrews has had nearly 1,000 days to commit to a plan for the West Gippsland Hospital and is yet to decide if it will be expanded at its current site, move to a Greenfield site already owned by the West Gippsland Healthcare Group between Drouin and Warragul, or potentially be closed all together,’ Mr Blackwood said.
‘Six months ago, together with Leader of the Victorian Liberal National Coalition Matthew Guy and Shadow Minister for Health Mary Wooldridge, I was proud to help announce that a future Victorian Liberal National Coalition Government would build a brand new hospital to service our regions health needs.
‘By not committing to this project, Daniel Andrews and Labor are again letting down West Gippsland residents who rely on the hospital and its allied health services.
‘With a rapidly growing population it is important West Gippsland has a diverse, well equipped hospital that can cater for everything from day surgery, to expecting mothers and everything in between.
‘The current hospital and its staff do an exceptional job with the facilities they have, but the time has come for the West Gippsland Hospital to have a new home, new facilities and more services.
‘It’s time Daniel Andrews got on board with the local community and committed to delivering a new West Gippsland hospital for our region,’ Mr Blackwood said.