WORK on Albury Wodonga Health’s new parents and baby unit will soon begin with tenders now being called for the project.
The successful contract will be announced within weeks, paving the way for work on the new building to start, with a scheduled completion date of January.
AWH operational director of women’s and children’s services Julie Wright yesterday showed plans to The Border Mail, detailing the two sleeping rooms, three consulting rooms, communal lounges, breastfeeding support area and education hub.
Ms Wright said AWH this week received notification from Wodonga Council its permit had been approved, meaning all that was left to do was to build.
The new site will be three times the size of the existing centre and will be located in Benson Court, behind the obstetrics unit at Wodonga hospital.
A Victorian government boost of $762,000 will assist its construction.
Ms Wright said for her, after having worked with the unit for a long time, this week’s developments were a milestone worth noting — particularly given the service’s history and the angst over closing and transferring the former service at Mercy Hospital in Albury and transferring it over the Border.
“This really has been one of the most rewarding things,” she said.
“After so much anxiety last year, to actually see the service working and now rebuilding ... every bit was worth it.”
The service now sees about 250 parents a month, an increase of about 100 from its old site.
“It’s been designed very much with the parents in mind and about what they want,” Ms Wright said.
There was more good news yesterday, however, with the Albury Hume Rotary Club donating $1500 to the unit, which will go towards the furnishing of one of the new rooms.