Hospital panel meeting reveals concept designs
A CONSUMER and Community Panel that will help forge the shape of the new $534 million Tweed Valley Hospital met for the first time on Tuesday.
The panel of about 50 members will participate in a range of workshops and focus groups and contribute to the clinical and physical design of the new hospital.
Support Our Hospital spokeswoman and panel member Penny Hockings said at Tuesday's orientation meeting, an architect took the panel through a presentation of concepts for the new hospital's design.
"He talked about the site and the positives to do with it, the fact they're going to maintain that rainforest area down the back, the positioning of it, they really covered a lot of information,” Ms Hockings said.
"They talked about the natural light and the views, they spoke about how important the healing environment actually is and how it's one of the strong points of the site with the views of the rainforest, the beach and the mountain.
"We've been so caught up in controversy that it was really nice to sit down and have the site talked through and I walked away feeling 'wow, we're going to get a really special hospital in NSW'.
"It really brought the project to life and to have the opportunity to be involved in that is very exciting.”
Ms Hockings said panel members were required to identify their areas of interest before they were split into different groups based on where they could add value.
"It's such a diverse group and we're feeling very excited,” Ms Hockings said.
A Health Infrastructure spokeswoman said the establishment of the panel was "an important step in the process towards building the new hospital”.
"(This) is part of the NSW Government's $582 million investment in health in the region, which includes the new Tweed Valley Hospital as well as interim upgrades to the existing Tweed Hospital,” she said.
The spokeswoman said the Consumer and Community Reference Panel would ensure key stakeholders "have a say in shaping the new regional referral hospital”.
Panel members will be split into various groups depending upon interest, and will continue to meet throughout the build.