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This section contains media releases released a little while ago. Please note that due to the long time when some of these were released images have been removed and some links might no longer work.

September 28, 2012

Further update on seismic issues at Grey Base Hospital

This week the West Coast DHB received preliminary engineering evaluations regarding seismic risk to further hospital facilities in Greymouth. This follows the receipt of detailed engineering reports three weeks ago that advised some of the buildings at Grey Base Hospital were earthquake prone and not seismically compliant.

West Coast DHB chief executive David Meates says, "Preliminary engineering evaluations are not yet complete on every building. However, over the last few days more information has emerged about the complex seismic problems facing Grey Hospital. We are dealing with a rapidly evolving situation in which new information continually changes our service and facility planning.

"The preliminary reports just received advise that the Acute and Community Mental Health Building and the Emergency Department | Outpatient building are earthquake prone. The Theatre building has been assessed as being above the level of earthquake prone, but it is still considered an earthquake risk. Some of the engineering remediation options are not yet clear, but are expected to be apparent within a timeframe of weeks.

"This information comes on the back of the reports received three weeks ago on the ward buildings. We have moved quickly to start remediation and strengthening of four columns in the Hannan and Barclay building and we expect this work to be completed by late November. When this work is done, we will be relocating services out of the building housing the Morice, McBrearty and Waterson Day Surgery wards, the Critical Care Unit and medical administration.

"We have briefed the National Health Board on this new information. We are seeking support from them to enable us to undertake short-term construction work that addresses the immediate risks while accelerating planning for the long-term future of health services on the Coast.

"Since receiving the first seismic report on our laundry we have acted quickly on the advice received to ensure both the safety of our staff and our patients. Clinicians and managers are taking an active role in leading the response to the immediate problem of reconfiguring the services operating from earthquake prone buildings.

"We will continue to update the community as new engineering reports come to hand. There are some complex options to be worked through over the next few weeks to determine both short-term and long-term solutions to maintain health service provision on the West Coast," says David Meates.

-Ends-

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Michael Frampton
Programme Director
West Coast District Health Board
Mobile: 027 289-0621

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