Shadow Minister for Health, Rob Lucas, said today that Minister Snelling and SA Health can no longer afford to ignore scathing criticism by doctors of their decision making and lack of consultation over planning and design issues at the NRAH.
Evidence from SASMOA and the AMA to the Legislative Council Budget and Finance Committee today demonstrated considerable anger and frustration at being ignored in the decision making process for the NRAH.
The AMA indicated critical infrastructure decisions had already been made and SA Health were now trying to ‘retrofit’ health services into a fixed design rather than more sensibly involving clinicians before final decisions were taken.
SASMOA also believes planning flaws will lead to ramping problems similar to those experienced at the FMC.
Evidence given by Dr David Pope, President of SASMOA, indicates that there are a number of growing concerns regarding the development;
A South Australian Health document entitled ‘Model of care for major hospitals’, provided to us in 2009, confirmed this. This document and other related documents seem to us to consist only of clichés and … motherhood statements in a format that seemed to be nothing more than management doublespeak; that is, that they were not useful in any practical way and did not realistically reflect the current and likely future needs of acute care medical practice carried out in hospitals.
They also have what can be described by hospital medical practitioners as extraordinary hyperbolic assertions without any real credible evidence. Further, such hyperbolic assertions have been made publicly, like the new model of care for the new Royal Adelaide Hospital producing a 30 per cent efficiency improvement.
It is expected by many of our members that major service delivery problems caused by poor layout, inappropriate adjacencies, lack of space for key functions and the lack of realistic models of care for safe and efficient patient care will exist at the new Royal Adelaide Hospital. We expect that these will need to be fixed as far as it is possible to try to minimise the risk to the public. This will require a more practical approach being taken to the whole project as soon as possible.
Based on feedback from many members and what we have observed of the approach taken by the new Royal Adelaide Hospital project team of SA Health, we believe that there is a substantial risk of leaving this state with a hospital riddled with acute health service delivery problems and major inefficiencies. Undoubtedly, this will adversely affect the acute care able to be provided to the community when they come to need it.
Mr Snelling needs to explain why the views of the experts within our healthcare system are being ignored.
It would seem sensible to most people to listen to the views of doctors when designing a $2.1b new hospital.
Sadly the Government’s current approach is a recipe for chaos and unlikely to ensure we get the very best hospital service we deserve for the $400m per year taxpayers will invest in the NRAH.