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First patients arrive at University of Canberra Hospital

Antony Perry

17 July 2018: The first patients have arrived at the brand-new University of Canberra Hospital (UCH) on campus.

About 40 patients were admitted to the hospital on Tuesday as ACT Health began the first phase of transferring patients to the new facility from other care facilities around Canberra.

The 140-bed hospital is Canberra’s only dedicated sub-acute care facility, specialising in rehabilitation and mental health care.

Minister for Mental Health and acting Minister for Health and Wellbeing Shane Rattenbury said the new model of care would provide better support and recovery outcomes for patients.

“These patients are the first to experience the new model of care that brings all the services they need under one roof at UCH,” Minister Rattenbury said.

“Moving these services into a modern, dedicated facility from seven different locations across the ACT will provide better care and support, streamline appointments and save patient travel time.

“UCH delivers the best possible healing environment, away from the acute setting of a hospital.”

Some University staff members from the Faculty of Health relocated to the hospital last week in preparation for classes starting next month in the new state-of-the-art Clinical Education and Research Centre (CERC) – the University’s shared teaching and research space.

Students studying health-related disciplines at the University will have access to the 1,600-square metre training space which includes a model ward, simulation suites, clinical training spaces and tutorial rooms.

The education spaces within the CERC replicate the clinical spaces within UCH, allowing for staff and student education and training in a real-world environment.

Students will also be able to complete clinical placements and work experience at the hospital, while academic staff will be able to take advantage of the hospital’s facilities for research purposes.

Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Deep Saini said this latest milestone marked a significant leap forward for the University in a teaching and research capacity.

“The University of Canberra is currently developing a world-class Health Precinct on its campus to shape the careers of future health professionals and provide the best services to the community,” Professor Saini said.

“The University of Canberra Hospital is the crown jewel in our growing Health Precinct and we’re so excited to see it is now operating.

"We have enjoyed every step of this journey with the ACT Government and look forward to seeing what this new and exciting chapter in our shared story holds.”

Other health facilities on campus include the University’s Health Hub, while construction of the Canberra Specialist Medical Centre is expected to be completed later this year.