More ED Doctors and Nurses to Help Ease Pressure at FMC

Flinders Medical Centre’s Emergency Department has been boosted by an additional nine emergency doctors to staff the expanded ED as part of the Marshall Liberal Government’s $86 million Southern Health Expansion Plan.

Minister for Health and Wellbeing Stephen Wade said the additional medical coverage will allow the 12 beds in the Emergency Extended Care Unit (EECU) to come online, easing pressure in the ED and assisting patient flow across the Southern Adelaide Local Health Network (SALHN).

“The Flinders Medical Centre (FMC) ED is the busiest in the state and we are committed to ensuring the hospital is equipped to meet growing demand both now and into the future,” Minister Wade said.

“This is why we are increasing the overall capacity of the FMC ED by up to 30 treatment spaces, making it the biggest ED in the state.

“While we were able to bring an additional 12 beds online to assist with anticipated COVID-19 demand earlier this year, we needed to secure the workforce to staff them on an ongoing basis.

“From Monday, these 12 beds will become operational bringing the short stay beds in the ED to 24, with additional nurses and doctors to provide timely care to patients in the south and respond to demand for acute medical services.

“The expansion forms part of a billion-dollar infrastructure build which is upgrading emergency departments at every major metro hospital, except the RAH, to ease pressure on health services throughout the system.

“The Marshall Liberal Government is focussed on delivering better healthcare, closer to home, and creating jobs by building what matters to South Australians.

“We are investing in our clinicians, services and world-class infrastructure to ease pressure on our emergency departments and better support the health and wellbeing of all South Australians.”

Southern Adelaide Local Health Network Chief Operating Officer, David Morris, said patients will benefit as staff continue to provide high quality acute medical services to the southern community in an enhanced environment.

“The 12 beds opening in the EECU space will allow patients requiring acute medical care to receive the care they need while also assisting patient flow into inpatient wards or safe discharge home,” Mr Morris said.

“Bringing these beds online on a consistent basis will ensure doctors, nurses, and allied health professionals have more space and the right tools to be able to treat patients faster.

“Enhanced medical coverage and nursing care will ensure the new beds are sufficiently staffed and clinicians are well placed to deliver the best possible care to patients.

“This is an exciting time for health in the south as we work extremely hard to continue the delivery of high-quality care to our patients in the most appropriate environment.”

As a precursor to the main FMC ED expansion, a body of early works are expected to commence this week within the EECU to refurbish and expand staff amenities as well complete upgrades to the ward’s patient monitoring and duress system.

The FMC ED and EECU will remain operational while work is underway, with plans to minimise interruptions to service delivery in place.

The construction tender call for the FMC ED expansion is now open, with works to commence in early December and expected to be complete in 2021.

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