An ageing population and more orthopaedic surgeries, like hip and knee replacements, are behind the $25 million expansion of Manuka Street Hospital, which began last month.
The redevelopment will see the hospital eventually grow to 22 private rooms, with the number of surgery theatres to increase from three to four.
Fifty percent of the surgeries at Manuka St are injuries covered by ACC, with other growth areas including cosmetic surgery and various elective surgeries.
The hospital sees around 2500 patients a year.
Manuka Street Hospital general manager Margaret Gibbs says the expansion has been in the pipeline since 2015.
“We were running short of beds and we also know that, with an ageing population and more and more dependence on orthopaedics, we were going to need another theatre.”
The development has been spilt into two stages, the first costing between $5-6 million and due to be completed by October this year.
The second stage isn’t due to start until the Nelson Tasman Hospice, has relocated to a new purpose-built site in Stoke in 2019.
The first stage centres around redeveloping the ward block and will include a new reception, patient and family lounge, consultation room, an ambulance bay, general store, public toilet block and, most importantly, eight new bedrooms plus four intermediate care beds.
“We expecting to be opening our doors with a brand-new ward in October, 2017. We’re working on reduced income until that happens and we really do need the beds, so it’s one of those things where you’ve just got to get cracking and get it done,” says Margaret.
“Right now we’re down to 13 bedrooms and it’s not nearly enough, but we’ll struggle through while we build and then we will go up to 22.”
The second, and much larger, stage of the hospital expansion is expected to cost between $15-20 million and will involve demolishing one of the hospitals existing three theatres and building two larger ones.
The day stay area will also be redesigned and moved to the front of the hospital, while the central sterile supply will be increased and the theatre sterilisation unit and commercial kitchen will both be expanded.
An inwards goods store, offices, and more consultation rooms will also be added.
The hospital has yet to place a timeline on the second stage, “that is just too much crystal ball gazing,” says Margaret.
Margaret says the cost to the project is quite significant. “It’s been quite a process to get to here and there is a lot going on, but it’s such an exciting project to be a part of.”
The new development was designed by Warren & Mahoney Architects and will be built by Gibbons Construction. The hospital is jointly owned by Southern Cross Hospitals Ltd and the Manuka Street Charitable Trust.