The health of Ipswich residents will receive a much needed boost with the announcement of a new public hospital to be built in Springfield, with 174 new beds and over 1,000 new frontline jobs created when operational.
Ipswich City Council welcomed the news, saying the new hospital was much needed for the community.
The new hospital will be co-located at the existing 95-bed Mater Private Hospital Springfield.
The expansion of the current private hospital will be built with private funds but the State Government will provide an initial $177 million in funding in the next budget for the care of public patients.
The new Mater Public Hospital Springfield will include an emergency department, an intensive care unit, maternity service and more procedural areas.
Ipswich Mayor, Teresa Harding, said this investment will deliver much needed hospital beds and create additional jobs for the community.
“This is a fantastic initial step in meeting the health care needs of the growing Ipswich community,” Mayor Harding said.
“Ipswich’s population is projected to almost double to 435,000 residents over the next ten years and we are set to welcome an additional 330,000 community members to 2041.
“This announcement, coupled with greater investment in Ipswich Hospital, will be essential to ensure current and future residents of Ipswich have access to the same level of health care as patients in Brisbane.
“The capacity of current services at Ipswich Hospital is below the Queensland standard, with one in three patients needing to seek care outside of Ipswich.
“A long-term solution is a tertiary hospital for Ipswich so residents are not forced to travel to Brisbane for treatment, putting greater demand on these already busy hospitals.
“This marks a positive step forward in health care for Ipswich residents, and we look forward to seeing what the Queensland Budget has in store for Ipswich Hospital.”
More than 700 jobs will be created during the construction phase of the Mater Public Hospital Springfield and more than 1,000 new frontline health jobs once operational.
The expanded Mater Springfield site will function as a fully integrated campus providing services for both public and private patients.
The hospital is expected to open in 2024.
Upgrades to Ipswich Hospital are also underway with a 26-bed ward being built at a cost of $25 million.
Ipswich Hospital is aiming towards tertiary level health services as part of West Moreton Health’s 15-year master plan.