Albury-Wodonga babies unit given a spot in hospital

ALBURY-Wodonga’s parents and babies unit is expected to be operating from new facilities within Wodonga hospital by February.

The service is used by 250 families a month and is presently situated in a house near the hospital at the southern end of Vermont Street.

A Victoria government funding boost of $762,000 announced yesterday by Health Minister David Davis should ensure the facility is finished on schedule.

It will be located next to the obstetrics unit.

The service previously operated from the Mercy Hospital in Albury for three decades before being transferred to Wodonga in October last year.

“For mothers, parents and their new children I think this will make a significant difference,” Mr Davis said.

The updated unit will include two single sleeping rooms, three therapy consulting rooms, space for perinatal depression services, education and meeting facilities and waiting and lounge areas.

The funding has been made available from the $56 million rural capital support fund.

Albury Wodonga Health women’s and children’s services operational director Julie Wright said staff were doing an admirable job from the existing facility despite space constraints.

“It is a constant balancing act,” she said.

“We are seeing a range of children’s ages from six weeks to nearly 12 months.

“There is also a fantastic young mums’ group running that provides lots of support.

“Our families, mothers and parents in this area will very much look forward to getting a purpose-built facility.”

Mr Davis and Ms Wright were joined at the announcement yesterday by member for Benambra Bill Tilley and AWH board chairman Ulf Ericson.

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