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Downgrade leaves Modbury Hospital fighting for its life

The State Liberals have grave concerns about the long-term future of Modbury Hospital in the wake of the release of the Weatherill Government’s plans to cut health services.

Health Minister Jack Snelling plans to downgrade Modbury’s Emergency Department to a second class service and redirect a significant portion of Modbury Hospital’s emergency caseload to the Lyell McEwin and Royal Adelaide Hospitals will drastically undermine Modbury’s viability as a hospital.


At present Modbury Hospital’s Emergency Department handles over 35,000 presentations a year and more than 11,000 of these people are then admitted to the hospital.


“Jack Snelling’s plan to divert serious emergencies to Elizabeth and Adelaide will result in a massive reduction in the total hospital admissions to Modbury,” said Shadow Minister for Health, Stephen Wade.


“Just as Martin Hamilton-Smith said in 2012 regarding the Repat Hospital – the first step in closing a hospital is closing its Emergency Department.


“The planned reduction to the Emergency Department, the transfer of rehabilitation services from Hampstead and the transfer of specialist eye services to Modbury will all combine to displace the medical services that are a metropolitan hospital’s life blood.


“The downgrading of Modbury’s Emergency Department to a second class service will place enormous pressure on the viability of acute care services at Modbury Hospital.


“With critical patients bypassing Modbury to go to seriously overcrowded mega-EDs, Modbury’s Acute Medical Wards could eventually not have enough admissions to be sustainable.


“Cardiology services and the Critical Care Unit (CCU) will also be put at risk by the reduction in the operation of the ED.


“Without a CCU, it will be very difficult for Modbury to take on major surgical operations, including hip replacements, surgery for bowel cancers and other life-saving general surgery. 


“At that point Modbury will no longer be the hospital the community knows and deserves,” Stephen Wade said.