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PLANNING BY BOARD MORE BEDS TO BE PROVIDED Important decisions regarding the utilisation of accommodaticii at its institution were made by the Auckland Hospital Board last night, when it considered a 61-page report prefaced by the sub-committee of the standing committee for administration and future hospital planning. The major proposals adopted by the board were as follows:— "To increase the total avaflable beds at all institutions by 384. "To reduce the beds at Auckland Hospital to 720. "To establish the children's hospital in the Domain block, and to utilise Middlemore Hospital for orthopaedic and military patients, plus general medical and surgical cases from the southern area. "To utilise Cornwall Hospital primarily for chronic patients, allowing 120 beds for obstetric and gynaecological patients and 40 recovery beds. "To proceed immediately with the addition of a further 120 beds at Middlemore Hospital."

Medical Staff in Agreement The committee stated that it had consulted with, and received valu- ■ able assistance from the medical staff in the course of its deliberations, and had finally referred to the senior surgeons and the senior physicians of the combined staff for their opinion as to whether the children and infectious diseases cases or the orthopaedic cases should be sent to Middlemore Hospital. In this connection the secretary of the visiting staff advised: "At a meeting of the combined senior staff it was felt that there were many objections to both proposals submitted. However, in view of the existing conditions, it was unanimously decided that the transfer of the orthopaedic department to Middlemore would be the more suitable move." Referring to the proposal to reduce the bed state at the Auckland Hospital, the committee added that it was also recommended that in the accommodation vacated urgently needed facilities for a number of departments be provided, so increasing the efficiency of these departments and enabling the services to be maintained until such time as the rebuilding scheme for the Auckland Hospital could be undertaken. If the recommendations were given effect to the alterations proposed should prove permanently' satisfactory for many years to come, and in fact, in several instances, would be part of the ultimate development scheme, it was stated. Addition to Middlemore The addition of another 120 beds to the 300 nearing completion at Middlemore Hospital, the committee considered, was the quickest and least expensive way of providing the extra accommodation urgently needed for acute medical and surgical cases. "The capital cost will be the least, and more important still, the future annual maintenance cost will be the least, as few extra services or staff will be required other than those directly employed in the wards," the report stated. "Jnst a Start" "This is an honest attempt to meet the situation," said Mr.-J. Guiniven, chairman of the committee, in moving the adoption of the report Mr. Guiniven stressed that this was just the start of a very expansive scheme and it would be disastrous for members to consider the proposals as a permanent solution. Mr. J. T. Parvin said he was concerned with the proposal to shift the soldiers. "You won't get one returned man to go to Middlemore," he said, stressing the satisfaction of the soldiers with their present quarters in the military annexe at the Auckland Hospital. The speaker was of the view the children should go to Middlemore. Mr. Parvin also expressed disfavour of the proposal to establish an obstetrical and gynaecological unit at Cornwall Hospital. "Once we take these people out of St. Helens and put them into Cornwall, the Government has given us the baby to, nurse," he said. Mr. J. Grierson: "We have to be out of Cornwall in five years' time.

Carefully Considered The matter of the children or the soldiers going to Middlemore had been carefully considered, Mr. Guiniven replied. Certain doctors had pointed out that it was sometimes necessary to be able te> refer children's complaints to specialists within a matter of minutes. Even after gaining these opinions the committee had referred the question to the combined medical staffs before making its decision. Mr. Guiniven said he thought the soldiers would be "sports" in the matter, as had the orthopaedic surgeons. The chairman of the board, Mr. Allen J. Moody, said it was to be regretted that any section should be whipped up about the matter. The board had always done the best for the soldiers, and he thought that the soldiers would be only too pleased to go to Middlemore. Mr. Grierson: I would say we are offering the soldiers the best institution in New Zealand, and I believe the soldiers will be pleased to go there. Mr. G. J. Park: The soldiers are not going to be there for long, we hope—maybe five or ten years—but the children are with us always. Utilisation of Middlemore for orthopaedic cases was a right decision, Mr. G. F. Bartley considered, but he was pleased to hear Mr. Guiniven say the proposals were not considered a permanent solution to accommodation problems. Earlier Mr. R. J. Coates had suggested that discussion be postponed until members of the board had had further time to consider the report, and Mr. V. M. Tracey moved an ' amendment that a special meeting be called to consider it before it was sent to the Minister. The amendment was lost on the voices, a number of speakers stating that there could be further discussion when comments were received from Wellington. The report was then adopted.

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Bibliographic details

HOSPITAL SPACE, Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 191, 14 August 1945

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HOSPITAL SPACE Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 191, 14 August 1945

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