How COVID could influence new Bundy hospital design
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected most aspects of daily life within the past 12 months to varying degrees.
It's likely to have ongoing impacts on both patients and health services either through the virus itself or its possible long-term health effects.
While there are no concrete answers just yet, it's worth considering the issue given people have suffered from COVID-19 in the Wide Bay region at a time when there's new health infrastructure being planned for Bundaberg.
A Queensland Health spokesperson told the NewsMail that one thing they do know is that "the impact of the virus varies widely between individuals".
"Some people may experience only a mild illness lasting days, while others can experience symptoms for much longer," the spokesperson said.
"We also know some patients may develop longer term complications.
"Very early studies suggest the heart, lungs, nervous and musculoskeletal systems may be impacted by the virus."
The spokesperson said it was "critical" to remember COVID-19 was still a relatively new virus.
"While we have come a long way in the last 12 months, we know there is still much to learn about its pathology and the long term impacts on individuals," the spokesperson said.
And the experts have been engaged to plan and design a new facility in Bundaberg that could meet the region's future needs.
"As part of the detailed business case for a new hospital in Bundaberg, Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service is working with a range of clinical and planning experts and using comprehensive data analysis to plan and design a facility that will meet the region's future health service needs," the spokesperson said.
"This includes taking factors such as chronic disease care, infection control requirements and greater telehealth capability into consideration, as planning continues to build capacity and enhance the range of services we provide."
Within the November update for the Bundaberg Hospital Redevelopment Project, some of the
proposed features are broken down for various departments.
With the Intensive Care Unit, there's a suggested dedicated pod of beds that can be converted into an isolation pod in the event of an infectious threat.
According to the document, single inpatient bays to care for a wide range of critically ill and high-dependency patients, access to natural light and an ICU courtyard to create a healing environment for patients and to enable loved ones to seek respite, and close proximity to theatres and procedural rooms, providing immediate access to these critical services are also proposed ICU features.
The project is also proposing to provide care across a range of inpatient and outpatient settings involving a mix of general and specialty adult inpatient wards; including respiratory/infectious diseases, stroke and older persons, oncology and palliative care, and a dedicated renal unit.
Consultation with the broader community is open and will run until February 14, 2021,
enabling residents across our service region to contribute feedback on the proposed new hospital and to help guide further development of the detailed business case.
To prevent the spread of COVID-19, Queensland Health urge you to stay home if you are sick and if you have any symptoms, no matter how mild, get tested.
Other measures include staying 1.5m away from other people, wash your hands with soap and water, or hand sanitiser, and leave a location if it is crowded.
If you have any concerns about your health, contact your doctor or contact 13 HEALTH (13 43 25 84).