Extra beds to fight COVID-19 pandemic

Thursday, March 19, 2020
Extra beds to fight COVID-19 pandemic
Bendigo Health will receive funding to open 45 new beds during the COVID-19 pandemic peak.

Bendigo Health has received funding for another 45 beds to effectively respond to the Coronavirus pandemic.

The State Government will invest $80 million in commissioning 129 new beds across Victoria over the next 12 weeks, in time for the peak of the pandemic.

Bendigo Health chief executive officer Peter Faulkner said 45 beds at Bendigo Health would be made available as demand emerged in Central Victoria.

“We don’t plan to commission them all straight away but as they are required. We work as part of the Victorian health system so we will be doing our part with that additional capacity to support the effort for tackling this pandemic across all of Victoria,” he said.

The state government has also provided $107 million to buy lifesaving equipment; an extra $22 million of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and a further $97 million will to backfill the healthcare workforce in the event that staff need to self-isolate through exposure or infection.

“We’re delighted with the support that’s been extended by the state government in the form of some funding to backfill staff which is terrific and that should help us maintain our workforce over the term of the crisis,” Mr Faulkner said.

Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos said: “This funding boost is about looking ahead and making sure our hard-working doctors, nurses, paramedics and public health clinicians have everything they need to tackle this pandemic head on.”

“With more staff, beds, equipment, PPE and other resources being pumped into our hospitals Victorians can be reassured that our health professionals have the best possible chance of managing the challenges of COVID-19."