19/09/2021 | Steven Marshall MP | Michelle Lensink MLC | Stephen Wade MLC | Better Services

Thirty additional hospital beds will begin to come online from tomorrow to ensure South Australians get the care they need, when they need it, as part of the Marshall Liberal Government’s strong plan to ease pressure on emergency departments.

Residents in Adelaide’s southern suburbs will particularly benefit from the 30 additional beds opening at the revitalised Repat Health Precinct, which will further ease pressure on metropolitan hospitals, such as the nearby Flinders Medical Centre.

Premier Steven Marshall said the new beds will open progressively for Transition to Home participants from tomorrow, following a $3 million refurbishment of two wards at the Repat.

“Expanding hospital capacity throughout the health system will continue to ease pressure on the state’s emergency departments to ensure South Australians can get the care they need, when they need it, and is another plank in our COVID management plan,” Premier Marshall said.

“Less than four years after Labor’s Peter Malinauskas closed the Repat Hospital, we are showing how crucial it was to overturn his decision, as we are now able to use this Reactivated site to build capacity across the system and also ensure we are COVID prepared.

“The new beds are a part of a record health spend under the current government which is enhancing every major suburban hospital and has ensured there are more nurses, midwives, doctors and paramedics employed now than ever before in the history of the state.”

“We are committed to stamping out ramping and we are rolling out a range of initiatives to expand hospital capacity, improve patient flow and deliver high quality health care for South Australians, closer to home.”

Minister for Health and Wellbeing Stephen Wade said the new Transition to Home service would play a significant part in easing pressure on metropolitan hospitals, such as the nearby Flinders Medical Centre.

“We know there are a number of people in our hospitals awaiting access to disability support through the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and there is an increasing number of NDIS participants presenting to our hospitals,” said Minister Wade.

“The Transition to Home initiative was critical in providing much needed capacity in our hospitals during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, and expanding the service to a further 30 beds at the Repat frees up acute hospital beds, providing a safe and appropriate environment for people living with a disability while they await their long-term home to be secured.

“The Repat continues to expand and open services that provide South Australians with the right care they need closer to home, while also cementing its place as a key pillar of health care within our public health network.”

“Opening up 30 additional beds under the Transition to Home service enables us to provide ongoing support to people in a more appropriate environment, while increasing the availability of acute inpatient beds in our metropolitan hospitals.
Minister for Human Services Michelle Lensink said the Government established Transition to Home in March 2020 and more than 70 people have accessed the service to date.

“We know the service works to not only create more capacity in our hospitals, but also to support people accessing it with support to regain their independence and rebuild important connections with their community,” said Minister Lensink.

“The refurbishment of Wards 5 and 6 has created dedicated spaces for recreation, more single rooms, access to outside space and the services and facilities across the precinct to support community members with more complex needs.”

Five beds will initially open in the refurbished Wards 5 and 6 on 20 September. The two-bedroom unit to support complex needs continues to be developed and will be operational later in the year.

All thirty beds are expected to be available by mid November.

The Transition to Home service has been established through a collaboration between Wellbeing SA, Department of Human Services, Local Health Networks and the Office of the Chief Psychiatrist.

For more information on the Reactivating the Repat project, go to www.sahealth.sa.gov.au/repat