Strong partnerships and a shared vision for the future of integrated healthcare is set to improve the wellbeing of our Central Coast community

Wednesday, 4 September 2019

The future of healthcare delivery on the Central Coast is taking shape, with work starting today on a new education and research facility located at Gosford Hospital.

Artist's impression of the building
Artist's impression

The development has brought strong investment from the Australian and NSW Governments, as well as the University of Newcastle and will champion integrated healthcare to improve the overall wellbeing of people on the Coast.

Leaders from the three organisations were on site today to celebrate the start of construction. The facility will house the University of Newcastle’s new Central Coast Clinical School as well as the Central Coast Research Institute for Integrated Care and Population Health - a partnership between the University and the Central Coast Local Health District (LHD).

Federal Member for Robertson, Lucy Wicks MP, lauded the commencement of construction and said the completion of the Clinical School and Research Institute would be a major win for the Central Coast community.

“This is a huge achievement for our region, boosting our local economy, creating more jobs for people on the Central Coast and giving our students the opportunity to study and live in Gosford,” said Mrs Wicks.

“We know that Universities can transform local economies like the Central Coast and help drive future job growth and opportunities.

“We want to see the Central Coast become a region of choice for education, training and research,” she said.

University of Newcastle Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Global Engagement and Partnerships, Professor Kevin Hall said the facility was just one step in a staged approach by the University to expand the Central Coast’s presence and develop the region as a centre of excellence in education and research. He thanked Mrs Wicks for her work to secure funding, including for additional allied health students to study on the Coast.

“Today we are taking a positive step towards the kind of dynamic, innovative and effective health precinct we envisage for our students, local industry, and the health workforce that will see this community continue to thrive,” Professor Hall said.

“The University’s Clinical School will give students the opportunity to complete their studies in one place, allowing them to live, train, study and eventually work here on the Central Coast.

“Students who are training to become the next doctors, nurses and allied health clinicians will learn the most modern techniques and well-researched clinical practices, working alongside world leaders in their field,” Professor Hall said.

“The Research Institute will explore innovative ways to better coordinate care for key issues such as ageing, obesity, Indigenous health, chronic disease and mental health. The overall book-to-bedside goal is to improve people’s care experiences and outcomes in sustainable ways.

“I also want to thank Dr Andrew Montague from Central Coast Local Health District for his leadership and for bringing his fantastic team along in this incredible partnership to deliver effective clinical training and world-class healthcare programs,” he said.

Professor Hall joined Dr Montague to welcome the Director of the Central Coast Research Institute, Professor Nick Goodwin, to the helm of this Australian flagship in research and innovation in integrated care.

“Professor Goodwin is a global leader in integrated care and health policy. To have secured his expertise for the Central Coast Research Institute is a major boost for this region,” said Professor Hall.

Dr Montague emphasised that Professor Goodwin’s local focus on research would encourage the community to be involved in addressing the health issues that mattered to them and would ultimately improve health outcomes for the community on the Central Coast.

“Professor Goodwin’s expertise and leadership will strengthen this partnership. The Research Institute is going to make a huge difference to people in the region.

“I see the development of this facility as a sign that the Central Coast has truly come of age – and we are advancing local opportunities for our next generation of healthcare professionals,” he said.

Professor Goodwin thanked his colleagues and partner organisations for a warm welcome and the opportunity to facilitate meaningful change for the region and beyond.

“As my colleagues have mentioned, the Central Coast Research Institute aims to translate research into practice to enable better health outcomes for people locally”

“Our research will lead to better care planning and delivery across health and other sectors. That in turn will lead to a future where people are better able to manage their health, recover more quickly from illness and injury, and live longer, more satisfying and independent lives,” Professor Goodwin said.

Member of the NSW Legislative Council, Taylor Martin, said the Institute will drive further investment in health and research and be a key part of the region’s economic growth.

“The facility will help attract and retain healthcare professionals, offering opportunities for training and clinical experience closer to home, while improving health outcomes through research conducted on site,” Mr Martin said.

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The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.