No construction work on the Laverton Hospital is expected to occur in 2023 as the Cook Labor Government delivers another broken promise for regional healthcare.
Shadow Minister for Regional Health Martin Aldridge MLC said the long-awaited project remained in limbo with the tender process yet to be finalised despite closing over six months ago.
According to the Minister for Finance the tender for Laverton Hospital closed on 21 April 2023. Only one response was received, and the tender process has not been finalised. No date has been set to award a contract or for construction to be completed.
“It’s a slap in the face to the Laverton community, who were assured by the Labor Member for Kalgoorlie last year that the project was on track and construction would be completed by the end of 2023,” Mr Aldridge said.
“Yet we are now in November 2023 and no tender has even been awarded, no work has commenced, and the Cook Labor Government has no timeline on when this important project will be completed.”
Mr Aldridge said $19 million had been allocated towards the project prior to WA Labor coming to power.
“We had it fully funded under Royalties for Regions, but when Labor took the reins in 2017, they slashed the funding and told the resources industry they should pick up the tab.
“In 2019, the Federal Government came to the rescue with $16.4 million, and it was only following community uproar and Opposition pressure that Labor reluctantly pitched in, bringing the total funding up to $23.5 million.
“It has been six long years since WA Labor ripped this funding out of the community, and the
people of Laverton are still waiting on answers about the future of their promised hospital redevelopment – six years of inaction, neglect and empty words.”
Mr Aldridge described the Laverton Hospital as being “unfit for purpose” and called on the Premier to honour his commitment to Laverton.
“I’ve visited Laverton Hospital – it’s a disgrace, plain and simple, and the Premier knows it. The Laverton community deserves better.
“Unlike the new $100 million cycling bridge over the Swan River, the planned Laverton Hospital works aren’t a luxury, they are essential, and include improved emergency care facilities, new beds, resuscitation bays, and acute treatment rooms.
Mr Aldridge said unfortunately, Laverton were not alone when it came to regional health woes. “The Laverton Hospital is a stark testament to the WA Labor Government’s indifference towards regional health and joins a long list of delayed projects and funding cuts orchestrated by Premier and former Health Minister Roger Cook.
“This includes the Geraldton Hospital redevelopment, identified by the Auditor-General as WA’s most delayed infrastructure project, along with promised redevelopments of hospitals in Tom Price, Meekatharra and Mullewa which have never seen the light of day.”