Construction has commenced on Geelong’s newest hospital Epworth Geelong. On opening of stage one in mid-2016, Epworth Geelong will be a fully operational hospital to deliver medical services to meet the needs of the community in the Greater Geelong, Colac-Otway, Golden Plains, Queenscliff and Surf Coast regions, the Point Cook, Werribee and Tarneit areas and further into South Western regions of Victoria. The $277m project is funded by Epworth HealthCare, the largest not-for-profit private healthcare group in Victoria.
Epworth HealthCare and Deakin University have been working in partnership to incorporate a dedicated education precinct, purpose-designed training programs and integrated learning facilities within clinical areas of the hospital. These facilities will enable clinical training for undergraduate and postgraduate medical, nursing and allied health students and will be an important centre for research in a range of health sciences.
The education precinct will complement, and be located closely to Deakin's Regional Community Health Hub (REACH) building. This joint initiative is based on international models such as the Cleveland Clinic and Mayo Clinic, leading US not-for-profit hospitals which have demonstrated improved patient outcomes are achieved in a teaching hospital setting.
Epworth Healthcare is conscious of the string of economic blows to Geelong in recent years and is keen to make a difference. Wanting to have a positive impact on the community and with a strong focus on corporate social responsibility it was important to them that they strive to include as many local manufacturers and suppliers as part of the project.
ICN has been involved in the project for over the past 2 years, and has worked closely with Epworth since tender phase to assist builders bidding for the project identify and engage with local suppliers. Brookfield Multiplex Construction (BMC) was successful in winning the tender to build the first stage of the project and have continued to work with ICN to identify suitable local suppliers.
Stuart Moore, Project Director for Epworth HealthCare, confirmed the important role of ICN in the process, ‘Epworth HealthCare has found the ICN Gateway invaluable. It is a process that has allowed our Builder BMC to translate the preliminary engagement by Epworth into formal engagement of local suppliers and subcontractors on the project’.
To date, BMC has formally engaged Geelong Fabrications (structural steel), Geelong Fire Services, Norris Plant Hire (Civil Works), Geelong Telephone Company. In addition, other Subcontractors engaged on the project are sourcing local employees who live in the greater Geelong region.
ICN, in collaboration with BMC, the City of Greater Geelong, through Enterprise Geelong, and Engineering Network Geelong has hosted a series of information sessions detailing the opportunities for suppliers to engage in the Epworth Geelong. As a result of these events, Brookfield Multiplex and suppliers were given the mutual opportunity to learn from each other and develop working relationships.
Work packages available for the project continue to be listed on ICN Gateway* and assist BMC to assess the capability of suppliers that have registered their expressions of interest.
As of July 2014, more than 250 jobs had been created on site including 29 apprenticeships. Epworth expect to provide 900 full time equivalent direct construction jobs with even more jobs in related industries. The build is expected to be complete by mid-2016.