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New outpatient facility and innovation hub at North Shore Hospital

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

A building once used for nursing accommodation at North Shore Hospital has been transformed into a modern new $9.9 million outpatient’s facility, teaching space and innovation hub.

Outpatients-Kāhui Manaaki (Cluster of Kindness) was officially opened this afternoon by Minister of Health Hon Dr Jonathan Coleman.

The new centre is part of a programme of renaissance and development of the North Shore Hospital Campus site.

"The previous facilities were frequently at capacity so one of the key motivations behind the move was to improve patient experience," Waitemata DHB CEO Dr Dale Bramley says. "Patient experience will definitely improve with spacious clinic consultation rooms now available. A number of services have been collocated to make it easier for patients.

"Respiratory patients will, for example, benefit from specialist clinics, lung function lab and oxygen services operating as a unified service for the first time.

"Provision is also made for facilities that add value to an outpatients visit - including a procedure room for dermatology, and a pathology space that allows "one stop shop" tissue diagnosis in patients such as those with thyroid disorders."

The 44-year-old building is located next to the $39 million Elective Surgery Centre that opened in 2013. Its ground floor will bring together a number of medical specialities, including geriatric outpatient services, that were previously spread across the greater hospital complex.

Its first floor will now be occupied by the Research Innovation and Knowledge Centre - an arm of the DHB supporting clinical teams that are seeking new ways of improving care for patients.

It will also provide a permanent residence for University of Auckland and Auckland University of Technology (AUT) senior staff and provide teaching and meeting rooms for students.

"Educating the next generation of clinical staff requires close collaboration between DHBs and tertiary institutions," Dr Bramley says. "The University of Auckland school of medicine has previously used space away from the clinical campus of the DHB, so this colocation is a big gain for students and academic teaching staff."

Staff and students from AUT’s Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences are excited to be part of the new development.

"As a long-term research and training partner of the Waitemata DHB, it’s clear that having a greater physical presence on the campus will be invaluable," AUT’s Associate Dean of Health, Professor Duncan Reid says.

"This will allow staff and students to further collaborate with the DHB and other tertiary partners, to shape the face of health care for local communities - which is core to all involved." The University of Auckland’s Dean of Medical and Health Sciences, Professor John Fraser, says the new facility will be an asset to all parties.

"The University of Auckland has a long and proud history of working alongside the Waitemata DHB. The new Outpatients-Kāhui Manaaki facility will further increase our co-operation and collaboration together. I know this will benefit our staff and students as well as patients well into the future."

The second floor of the building will be occupied by the Haematology Research Group - advancing work that has already dramatically improved the outcomes for Waitemata DHB patients with diseases such as myeloma, over the last decade.

Space left vacant in the main hospital building as a result of the opening will be developed to improve other service delivery and timeliness of care for patients.

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