Opinion

Now where do the beds fit?

by
June 26, 2017

Confirmation that Goulburn Valley Health's paediatric ward in Shepparton will retain the same number of beds is good news.

The amount of hospital beds at Goulburn Valley Health remains an important issue for our region.

A report earlier this month from The News confirmed there was uncertainty from the Department of Health about the future number of beds.

Currently the hospital has budgeted for 12 paediatric beds, but there was only guaranteed funding for eight beyond 2020 when the health service’s redevelopment was due to be finished.

Naturally a statement such as this is cause for concern in the community because having a good amount of paediatric beds available at GV Health is important for the care of young people and children.

These beds help families stay in the region rather than having to travel to Melbourne or other regional areas for health care.

Not only that, the paediatrics department at GV Health provides a vital service, and ensuring it is well equipped helps its staff provide the best care they can.

Fortunately the issue about the number of beds GV Health’s paediatric department will receive has been put to rest.

Member for Shepparton Suzanna Sheed asked Health Minister Jill Hennessy in parliament’s Question Time on Wednesday just how many beds would be funded in the redeveloped hospital.

The response from the minister, which confirmed there would be no reduction in bed numbers, has been reassuring for the hospital and wider community and demonstrates the issue has been taken seriously by policy-makers.

But Ms Sheed has since raised an important point in asking for details about the how the guaranteed 12 paediatric beds will fit into the redeveloped health service.

How the beds fit in to the design of the hospital needs to be taken in to consideration when looking at how they will benefit health care in the region and functionality across the ward.

It is reassuring that Ms Hennessy has offered Ms Sheed the chance to meet with the department to receive more details and have a discussion about the beds.

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