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Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean says she’s impressed with the proposed changes to Oamaru Hospital. 

“I realise the proposed staffing restructure has caused some anxiety throughout the community, and I acknowledge the hospital’s place in the community is a passionate subject for many locals. 

“However, if we separate our emotion and look into the indicated infrastructure changes, I suggest many locals might well be impressed with the plans.” 

Ms Dean says the new ‘proposal for change’ document indicates a smarter use of existing infrastructure with minimal building work required to save costs. 

“When I recently took a tour of the hospital with the management team you cannot deny areas are outdated with some glaringly obvious structural improvements needed. 

“I was impressed with the proposed transformation of part of the kitchen area into a new procedures room enabling more minor operations to be offered locally. 

Ms Dean says there is no doubt the community will benefit from clinicians and local GPs having access to a space to provide a range of minor procedures. 

“The hospital will work with the community to determine what range or minor procedures are best offered for this environment, but could include minor orthopaedic, skin and other diagnostic procedures. 

“I am also impressed with the management team’s vision for the rest of the hospital, such as creating a new dedicated resuscitation room within the Emergency Department and bringing patients with the highest health care needs together to ensure they are treated by the most skilled staff. 

“Oamaru Hospital will turn twenty next year, and with minimal structural changes to date it’s certainly time something was done. 

“I support hospital management who are trying to create a more effective space so they can provide the most adequate service within the existing area. 

“While daunting, an overall restructure can be what’s needed to ensure services are being run as efficiently as possible, to enhance medical services and make sure the community is getting the very best treatment available.”

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