Public works committee: flinders medical centre transforming health project

In Parliament - Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Mr DULUK (Davenport) (11:09:45): I also rise to speak on the Public Works Committee in relation to the Flinders Medical Centre with just a couple of brief remarks. As the local member for the Flinders Medical Centre, I think everyone welcomes an upgrade to the hospital in their electorate. Certainly, the Flinders Medical Centre and the $170 million spend is a welcome spend by the government.

Two things concern me: one, this $170 million spend is at the expense of about $117 million that was promised by the government in the lead-up to the 2014 state election. Whilst it is a wonderful headline figure, I think overall health services in the state are at a loss as a result of the decisions being made by the government. As the member for Chaffey touched on, a lot of the upgrade to the Flinders Medical Centre is at the expense of the Repatriation General Hospital and the closure that has brought, and the tabling of 119,000 signatures against that closure is certainly of concern.

A concern which is often raised with me, and was again raised on Friday by constituents, is about car parking at the new Flinders Medical Centre. At the moment, there is a huge strain on the parking capacity for visitors, users, staff and the like of the precinct, including the university. We have a private hospital there and we have a public hospital there and there is not sufficient parking at the moment. I am concerned, with this current proposal, that those parking needs will not be addressed and there will be car parks lost for staff as a result of the Darlington project.

One of the biggest concerns for me is the ability for users of the centre to have access to the upgraded Flinders Medical Centre. I urge the government and the planners within health and the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure to give due consideration to the planning requirements because I believe it is going to be a dog's breakfast. If we can manage this process then I think it will all be smoother in the long term.