Patients have begun moving into the new State Rehabilitation Service at Fiona Stanley Hospital today.
With 120 patients being transferred from Royal Perth Hospital, Health Minister Kim Hames said this was the biggest single move of patients ever undertaken in Western Australia.
“Around 23 vehicles are being used, including ambulances, wheelchair-accessible vehicles and a special bus which can transport six wheelchair patients at a time,” Dr Hames said.
“The move has been scheduled for a Saturday to have the least impact on the clinical care of the patients and to minimise disruption to traffic and the general public.”
St John Ambulance has responsibility for transporting patients, using a range of vehicles according to the needs of each patient.
“As always, patient care is a top priority and the safety and care of patients during this transition has been at the forefront of the planning process since the beginning,” the Minister said.
The 140-bed State Rehabilitation Service will be the first of its kind in Australia to house complex rehabilitation services in one location. It is a four-storey, purpose-built facility with design features - such as larger rooms - based on feedback from patients and practitioners.
It will provide services not currently offered in WA, such as multi-diagnostic rehabilitation, which helps patients who have had an acute illness, after a severe burn or other ailment.
The arrival of patients signals the start of the phased opening of Fiona Stanley Hospital. This first phase also includes the introduction of support services such as pathology, pharmacy, imaging and a range of non-clinical services across the main hospital. The emergency department at Fiona Stanley Hospital is scheduled to open in February 2015