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Phillip Island Community Hospital
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Phillip Island Community Hospital

Location 50-58 Church Street, Cowes, Victoria, 3922, Australia

The Victorian Government is investing $675 million to build 10 community hospitals in growth areas like Phillip Island.

Phillip Island Community Hospital will be a small public hospital providing outpatient care, community-based health and social care services.

Once complete, the new community hospital will help take pressure off nearby major hospitals, including Wonthaggi Hospital. It will also enable more people to manage their health needs closer to home with links to specialists, community health providers and social support services.

Managed by Bass Coast Health, the Phillip Island Community Hospital will be an expansion of the current Phillip Island Health Hub.

The Community hospitals program aims to achieve the following benefits:

Better services closer to home

The Victorian Government is investing $675 million to develop 10 community hospitals in major growth areas across Victoria. These facilities will provide more locally available public healthcare options and better access to important everyday health services close to home.

Services will be tailored to each community and may include urgent care services, day surgery for minor procedures, public dental and specialist appointments.

Stronger links to specialist care

Community hospitals will also help keep local communities healthy by providing links to other local healthcare providers including GPs, allied health services, specialists, social services and major hospitals if more complex care is required.

Reduce pressure on major hospitals

Community hospitals will also reduce pressure on major public hospitals and emergency departments. This will assist major hospitals to focus on critical care, complex health issues and surgeries, emergencies and trauma while our community hospitals support locals to manage their everyday health needs and access community services.

Meeting increased demand

As Victoria’s population grows and healthcare needs change, community hospitals will help meet increasing demand for public health services in major Victorian growth areas.

Once complete, the ten community hospitals will have the capacity to treat at least 114,000 more urgent care patients each year. They’ll support 55,000 dialysis treatments and enable more than 100,000 additional allied health sessions each year.

The program will support:

The Phillip Island Community Hospital will be managed by Bass Coast Health and expand services currently provided by the Phillip Island Health Hub. It will offer:

  • urgent care services
  • dialysis
  • day chemotherapy
  • day surgery
  • general medical and specialist appointments
  • women’s health
  • social support services
  • paediatric care
  • diagnostic services, including pathology and imaging
  • public dental services
  • chronic disease management
  • mental health services
  • alcohol and other drug support services
  • Family safety and crisis support services
  • allied health and rehabilitation services
  • pharmacy services.

Strong links to specialists, community health providers and social support services will ensure more seamless follow-up treatment and support for those who require complex care.

We value community and stakeholder input and are committed to keeping the public informed on the Community hospitals program.

We work closely with key stakeholders across the health sector and local government. We aim to deliver functional and efficient health facilities that are fit-for-purpose, inclusive and that meet community needs.

Our engagement program includes:

  • user groups
  • working groups
  • surveys
  • workshops
  • tailored engagement with identified key groups, including people with lived experience, Traditional Owners groups and culturally diverse communities.

We’ve established community consultative committees (CCC) to ensure the views and aspirations of the community are considered in the planning and design for each community hospital. Committees are made up of a diverse cross-section of community members, local service providers and organisations who provide a local perspective and considered advice on a range of issues relating to the project.

Our engagement reports provide a summary of the community’s feedback and key priorities at each phase of the project.

View our community engagement report on the service planning phase.

We are in the process of collecting community feedback and input on the design for each community hospital and will share community consultation reports soon.

To stay up-to-date with the program, sign up to our Community Hospital newsletter.

The Phillip Island Community Hospital community consultative committee (CCC) provides a forum for local community members to participate in the planning and development of the project through open dialogue and consultation.

The consultative committee includes:

  • foundation members from key organisations such as local councils
  • health service providers and Aboriginal representation
  • community members selected through an independent expression of interest process.

The Phillip Island CCC is chaired by Jordan Crugnale MP, Member for Bass.

Meeting summaries can be found on the Community Hospitals community consultative committee meeting summaries page.

About the Phillip Island Community Hospital

Who is delivering the Phillip Island Community Hospital?

The Victorian Health Building Authority is delivering the project in partnership with Bass Coast Health and architect, HDR. A builder to deliver the main construction works is expected to be appointed in early 2023. An early works contractor will prepare the site for main construction in 2022.

Where will the Phillip Island Community Hospital be located?

The Phillip Island Community Hospital will be located at 50-56 Church Street, Cowes, expanding the existing Phillip Island Health Hub. The new community hospital will not replace the Urgent Care Centre currently operating at the hub, but will expand the range of healthcare services currently available to the local community.

This will also help take pressure off nearby major hospitals such as Wonthaggi Hospital – enabling them to focus on critical care and complex health issues, emergencies, surgeries and procedures.

Why was this location selected for the community hospital?

This location was chosen for the Phillip Island Community Hospital as it is home to the Phillip Island Health Hub, allowing the existing site to be expanded. This means the local community can access a larger range of services at an already familiar and central location. The site also has good links to the adjacent transport centre, and the Cowes Culture and Community Centre.

The Victorian Health Building Authority assessed the site against an extensive Site Evaluation Criteria, which is uniform across the community hospitals program.

Will the hospital be open 24/7 and will there be overnight beds?

The Phillip Island Community Hospital is a new addition to the existing Phillip Island Health Hub on Church Street, Cowes.

The expanded Urgent Care Centre will be operational 24/7 for minor bumps and bruises and non-emergency care. The remainder of the facility will operate extended business hours and will not accommodate overnight stays.

Will there be an emergency department?

No. People will be able to attend the facility for minor bumps and bruises and non-emergency care. People experiencing a medical emergency should visit their nearest emergency department.

How was the community consulted on this project?

We value community and stakeholder input and are committed to keeping the public informed about the Phillip Island Community Hospital.

In the early stages of the project, a community consultative committee was established to ensure the views and aspirations of the local community are considered in the planning and design for the Phillip Island Community Hospital.

The committee includes members from Bass Coast Shire Council, health service providers, First Nations representation, community members selected by an independent expression of interest process, and a limited number of invited community members. The committee provides local perspectives and advice on a range of issues relating to the project.

The community hospitals program as a whole is also informed by user groups and tailored engagement with identified key groups, including people with lived experience, First Nations and culturally diverse communities.

Traffic, parking and access

Where will the entrance to the Phillip Island Community Hospital be located?

All hospital visitors and vehicles will enter from Church Street. For any visitors arriving on foot, the footpath through the existing transit centre will be extended to provide additional connectivity from Chapel Street.

Will the hospital be accessible for people with limited mobility?

Accessibility is a key principle in designing a community hospital.

The Phillip Island Community Hospital will provide on grade car parking with accessible access to the hospital for people with disabilities or who are elderly or frail.

Mobility scooter parking with charging points will be provided at the entry to the facility.

Consulting spaces, waiting rooms and amenities within the facility have been designed with accessibility in mind and in accordance with the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA).

Are there plans to manage increased traffic in the area?

Yes. The Victorian Health Building Authority first undertook a preliminary parking and traffic analysis as part of the site evaluation process to understand the impact and determine the suitability of the site. We’ve since conducted a second, more detailed traffic and parking analysis, which formed the basis for our traffic and parking management plan. This plan helped determine the number of parking spaces required, and prepare for any potential traffic management measures.

We will continue to work with the Bass Coast Shire Council and the appointed builder to ensure appropriate access to the hospital and to minimise impact on the surrounding road network both during construction and once the community hospital is operational.

Will ambulances and large vehicles servicing the hospital cause safety and congestion issues on Church Street?

The Phillip Island Community Hospital will not have an emergency department (ED), so there will be no ambulance vehicles transporting patients to the community hospital. In some instances, an ambulance may be called to transfer a patient from the community hospital to a major hospital ED.

Throughout the construction period, the VHBA will work with Bass Coast Shire Council and local stakeholders to address any potential traffic and congestion issues on Church Street and surrounding streets.

Have the impacts to parking been considered?

Yes. The Victorian Health Building Authority first undertook a preliminary parking and traffic analysis as part of the site evaluation process to understand the impact and determine the suitability of the site. We’ve since conducted a second, more detailed traffic and parking analysis, which formed the basis for our traffic and parking management plan. This plan helped determine the number of parking spaces required, and prepare for any potential traffic management measures.

Adequate onsite parking will be provided to support the parking demand generated by the community hospital, without reliance on surrounding streets.

Parking arrangements (including fees) at the Phillip Island Community Hospital will be at the discretion of the operating health services, Bass Coast Health and the Phillip Island Health Hub.

Design

What will the Phillip Island Community Hospital look like?

The Phillip Island Community Hospital has been designed with the local character in mind to achieve a respectful, integrated design that is fit for purpose.

The facility’s exteriors, main reception and waiting area, and public courtyard have been carefully considered to create a safe and serene environment where people can catch some fresh air and relax.

Natural light, coastal materials and colours that are ‘cleansing and healing like the ocean’ were some of the community’s priorities incorporated in the final designs. The colour palette was developed to mirror the landscape on Phillip Island and surrounds, featuring colours inspired by the native flora and environment of the area.

The design process was guided by design principles developed in partnership with Bass Coast Health clinicians, staff and consumers, and with input from the Phillip Island Community Hospital community consultative committee.

How was the community’s feedback considered in the design?

In the early stages of the project, a community consultative committee was established to ensure the views and aspirations of the local community are considered in the planning and design for the Phillip Island Community Hospital. During the design consultation process, we received some great ideas and suggestions, some of which the architects have incorporated into the design.

The use of light-coloured materials to reflect the coastal atmosphere in Phillip Island, accessible carparking, native landscaping and opportunities to display Aboriginal artworks are examples of priorities that the architects took on board. The community also wanted natural light throughout the building, and colours that are ‘cleansing and healing like the ocean,’ both of which were considered in the final designs.

How many storeys will the building be?

The Phillip Island Community Hospital will be two storeys in height to ensure health services can be delivered in a functional and efficient layout. The project architects will make sure the building is not imposing and matches the character of the surrounding area.

Environment, flora and fauna

Will any green space be lost as a result of this project? Will any trees be removed?

We understand the significance of trees and green spaces to the community, which also have benefits to the health and welling of staff and clients attending the hospital. As part of the design process, the Victorian Health Building Authority and Bass Coast Health worked with arboricultural and ecological experts and landscape architects to find a design solution that would retain as much of the nearby greenery as possible. The final assessment concluded that three large trees and some smaller trees and shrubs will need to be removed to enable the construction of this important healthcare facility.

The Victorian Health Building Authority will explore options to offset any removed native vegetation with locally appropriate planting and landscaping.

An unused grass verge to the rear of the site will be replaced with carparking. However, a larger central courtyard, staff courtyard, quiet space courtyard and privacy courtyard are all featured in the design of the community hospital.

How will the trees be removed?

Arborist’s assessments have been completed to determine:

  • structural strength of trees and vegetation, including the size and location of tree roots
  • health and life expectancy of trees
  • amenity and environmental value that trees provide to the local area
  • location of utilities in proximity to trees.

Trees and shrubs will be removed in accordance with authority conditions, and under the direction of a qualified arborist who has also assessed their condition.

Prior to removal, the trees will also be inspected for the presence of wildlife, and qualified wildlife handlers will be called in to safely move wildlife as necessary.

What happens with removed trees and flora and fauna?

We are committed to ensuring that trees and vegetation that are removed as part of the project can be repurposed on site or provided to the community to reuse as they see fit. For example, the design team is exploring if the main trees cuts can be used to create outdoor seating or play-based functions on the site.

Remaining tree cuts, branches and stumps can be provided to the community and used to create garden screens, habitat logs and nesting boxes for fauna relocation, or mulch for use in communal flower beds. There is also the possibility for seedlings to be collected and can be used for re-planting throughout the community.

Are there any endangered species inhabiting the site?

No. During the planning phase an ecological assessment of the site was undertaken and determined that there were no endangered flora or fauna on the site.

The Victorian Health Building Authority, Bass Coast Health and the appointed builder will take any possible steps to minimise impacts on any wildlife that may be present in the area. For example, the trees will be thoroughly inspected for the presence of wildlife, and qualified wildlife handlers will be present to safely move any wildlife as necessary.

Construction

How will construction impacts be managed to minimise disruption and impacts to nearby residents?

We will work closely with the appointed builder to minimise construction impacts on the community. This will include noise and vibration monitoring, noise control measures in accordance with Environment Protection Authority (EPA) and council-imposed noise guidelines, dust suppression measures and the use of clear construction signage.

When will the project be completed?

The Phillip Island Community Hospital is on track to be completed in 2024.

This project is being delivered by the Victorian Health Building Authority in partnership with:

  • Bass Coast Health (managing health service)
  • HDR (architects).

News

News

Phillip Island Community Hospital
  • Location
  • 50-58 Church Street
    Cowes, Victoria, 3922, Australia

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Last updated: 26 October 2022