“It’ll be clear, it’s happening, it’s getting done,” said State Member for Oxley Melinda Pavey.
NSW Health has granted an additional $23 million to go towards the construction of a new hospital on a greenfield site in North Macksville.
This is in addition to the $50 million committed in March 2015.
Local MP Melinda Pavey said consultations eight months ago revealed the community was worried about some limitations of the existing site, including the location itself, the limited parking and whether there would be value for money redeveloping the old hospital.
“There was some really important conversations that went on behind the scenes and we've been able to secure an extra 23 million dollars out of NSW Health to build a brand new hospital on a new site, and the reason that we got this support is it just showed a better benefit to the community for the long term,” Mrs Pavey said.
“The construction will get underway next year, 2018, it'll be a very big landmark on the community landscape.
“There's even talk that hopefully by July 2019 it'll be ready.
“It'll take another probably eight or nine months to get the plans and the design, and all that sort of stuff done.
“Building it is often the quickest part, once you get the plans approved, building it is the easy part.
“It’ll be a purpose-built facility with the most modern design standards to serve the needs of our growing region.
“I’m absolutely delighted, we've got a new hospital at Kempsey also, and the old hospital at Kempsey we're able to use as a community health space, but I also into the future see a lot more networking between Kempsey and Macksville.
“Currently the local health districts are sort of Port Macquarie and Kempsey and Macksville, Coffs, but with the freeway everything's changing in our region in terms of how we might access things. So I can see a lot more activity between local clinicians supporting each other in manning and working at both Macksville and Kempsey.”
Ecstatic Nambucca mayor Rhonda Hoban said the old hospital had served the community well, but there were obvious benefits to having a purpose-built facility.
“There are also wider benefits, when people are looking to relocate, they look for a beautiful natural environment, lovely friendly people, schools, and opportunities, and we have all of those things, and now we will have a new hospital to better serve the needs of staff and patients,” Cr Hoban said.