14 May 2024

Riverina healthcare workers to benefit from $45-million accommodation project

| Jarryd Rowley
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New accommodation for healthcare workers in Narrandera, Leeton, Finlay and West Wyalong is expected to be operational by the end of the year.

New accommodation for healthcare workers in Narrandera, Leeton, Finlay and West Wyalong is expected to be operational by the end of the year. Photo: Supplied.

Prototype units set to serve as accommodation for healthcare workers are about to be rolled out in several regional towns including Narrandera, Leeton, Finlay and West Wyalong.

The units, part of a $45.3-million project, will look to support the transition of healthcare workers moving to regional towns by providing accommodation close to work.

Accommodation was one of the key factors identified by the State Government in attracting new workers to rural and regional hospitals.

The units will be built off-site and then installed on hospital grounds in Cooma, Broken Hill, Finley, Leeton, Narrandera and West Wyalong. The sites were selected following consultation with local health districts to determine which facilities had the most urgent need for accessible, affordable accommodation to support their workforce.

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Two prefabricated accommodation cabins, each with two units, have been delivered and installed at Balranald Hospital. Works on site are currently being finalised and the units are expected to be ready for occupation in the coming months.

All accommodations will follow the same architectural design, and sustainability will be a focus with the units fully electrified and solar-ready.

The units are due to be installed by mid 2024 with plans for workers to be living in them by the end of the year.

Minister for Regional Health Ryan Park said recruitment was the number one issue faced by regional health services and by providing accommodation, more workers would be compelled to look at rural areas.

“I’ve always said everyone deserves access to quality healthcare from our amazing healthcare workers, no matter where they live,” he said.

“Critical to achieving this has been bringing more health workers to our regions, and these units will support staff looking to establish themselves in a new community.”

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Minister for Regional NSW and Minister for Western NSW Tara Moriarty said the $45-million project was an example of the NSW Government getting on with the job and delivering services regional areas needed.

“Communities in the Murrumbidgee, Southern NSW and Far West will be pleased to see this progress and I look forward to seeing the accommodation become available to health workers by the end of this year,” she said.

“Our government is making a real difference in the regions with better decisions and smart investments that deliver a positive difference in health, education, business and utilities.”

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