Cook must reverse decision to move Women and Babies Hospital to Murdoch

Shadow Health Minister Libby Mettam is calling on Roger Cook to step in immediately and reverse the decision to relocate the new Women and Babies Hospital to Murdoch.

“For four years Mr Cook championed and defended the QEII site as the best possible location for the State’s new Women and Babies Hospital,” Ms Mettam said.

“For very valid reasons, every single review of health infrastructure undertaken by any Government since the 2004 Reid Report, has recommended the QEII site.

“Even the McGowan-Government’s own Sustainable Health Review recommended the QEII site.”

Ms Mettam said it was clear that current Health Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson had turned a deaf ear to the chorus of medical professionals who were begging her to reverse the decision to put the hospital in Murdoch.

“While Amber-Jade Sanderson has dismissed the concerns as being those of just a ‘a small number of clinicians’, I’m sure Mr Cook knows full well that the health professionals who are begging the Government to reconsider are not given to going public with their concerns unless those concerns are real and grave,” she said.

“It is not credible that clinicians who warned of potential deaths and life-long disabilities in babies if the hospital was located in Murdoch, were simply trying to ‘whip up anxieties amongst prospective parents’ as Minister Sanderson said during Estimates hearings last month.

“Mr Cook has always been well aware of the complexities of the QEII site and on occasions defended the decision to put the WBH there.”

During Question Time in May 2019 Mr Cook said about the difficulties at the QEII site: “It is obviously a fairly complex piece of work, because although we are moving a hospital to a constrained site, in addition we are moving it to a site (that) already has an operational hospital, including Perth Children’s Hospital. It will be a difficult project but one that we need to do.”

“Just because it is challenging does not mean the QEII site should not be pursued in the best interests of our youngest and most vulnerable patients,” Ms Mettam said.

“Mr Cook must make reversing the decision to put the WBH in Murdoch his first priority.”