Rebuilding The Alfred a priority for Vic State Budget

The redevelopment of Alfred Health’s Prahran site should be a priority for next week’s State Budget. The project would create thousands of jobs and sure up health care for the inner city and southeast, including the urban development at Fishermans Bend. 

The Alfred Hospital is falling apart with a leaky roof, flooded surgical theatres and cracked walls. Despite attempts to fix the roof, the building’s roof continues to leak. A flood last year forced the cardiothoracic surgery program to be relocated to the Cabrini.

The Australian Medical Association’s (AMA) Victoria Branch has called on the government to provide $2 billion for the redevelopment, citing the hospital as in the “worst shape” of Melbourne’s hospitals. The AMA said the Government “has taken its eye off the public hospital infrastructure needs across the state”.

Infrastructure Victoria’s 30-year Infrastructure Strategy recommended the redevelopment of Alfred Health be completed in 10-15 years. Given the redevelopment is likely to take at least a decade, funding will be needed this budget to deliver on this recommendation.

Alfred Health caters to 700,000 Victorians in Melbourne’s southern and bayside communities, while its state wide services provide care to people residing across the Victoria and Australia. The Alfred, along with the Royal Melbourne Hospitals are the two major trauma services in Victoria.

They are the state-wide provider of psychiatric intensive care, treating the most complex patients in Victoria. The complexity of these patients is growing and so is the need to expand the Alfred’s delivery of mental health care.

The Alfred is also the state-wide provider of 15 services in total, including heart and lung transplants, completing 94 lung and 37 heart transplants in 2018-19.

Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Health, Georgie Crozier:

“Labor needs to prioritise funding to rebuild the Alfred in next week’s State Budget.

“The Alfred is in a parlous state of repair so Daniel Andrews must urgently provide funding for an immediate rebuild.

“By investing in the Alfred, it will mean better services for all Victorians and more jobs at a time Victoria is in the middle of a jobs crisis.”

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