Perrottet and Andrews announce joint plan to overhaul Albury Base hospital

NSW premier says $550m project to boost health in border region is a ‘great example of co-operation across political lines’

The premiers of New South Wales and Victoria have announced a joint plan to fund a $558m redevelopment of the Albury Base hospital to improve healthcare in the border region.

The announcement, from two leaders on opposite sides of the political aisle who have developed a strong history of collaboration, comes a month out from the Victorian election and four months ahead of the NSW state poll.

Both states will chip in $225m for the redevelopment, in addition to the $108m already allocated by the NSW and commonwealth governments, with construction to begin next year. It is slated to be completed by 2027.

The NSW premier, Dominic Perrottet, said the project served as a “great example of cooperation across political lines” to get results for people in the border region.

His Victorian counterpart, Daniel Andrews, added that it was important to ensure community members and healthcare professionals “have the facilities they need”.

An intensive care unit and updated maternity and paediatric facilities will be part of a new clinical services building to be built at the existing site, where a new helipad will also be installed.

It is hoped the development will also mean the region is better able to attract and retain skilled medical staff amid a nationwide shortage and continued pressure on health systems.

Albury-Wodonga hospital services are jointly funded by the Victorian and NSW governments but run by Victoria. Services are split between two campuses, and patients are often required to travel to receive treatments.

Wodonga, on the Victorian side of the border, forms part of the Benambra electorate, currently held by the Liberal MP Bill Tilley on a 2.6% margin. The seat has been held by the Liberals and other conservative parties all the way back to its formation in 1877.

But at the November state election, Tilley faces a strong challenge from Jacqui Hawkins, who is contesting Benambra as an independent for the second time. She considers herself a “yellow” independent – more akin to federal MP Helen Haines – rather than a “teal”.

The Coalition must retain the seat if it is to form government and the party had already committed to spending $300m towards a new hospital, or one-third of the final expense, relying for the rest on support from NSW and the commonwealth.

The Albury Base hospital will continue to function until the completion of the project.


Tamsin Rose and Benita Kolovos

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Article image
NSW’s Matt Kean comes to town spruiking the Victorian Liberals’ ‘progressive’ credentials
The New South Wales treasurer and energy minister insists the Liberal party in Victoria can appeal to teal voters

Benita Kolovos

27, Oct, 2022 @3:00 PM

Article image
Lovefest between NSW and Victorian premiers on full display while Matthew Guy is out of sight
Dominic Perrottet praises partnership with Daniel Andrews when asked about Victoria’s Liberal leader

Benita Kolovos

30, Aug, 2022 @5:30 PM

Article image
‘Can’t sit in the too-hard basket’: premiers push Anthony Albanese to overhaul health system
Dominic Perrottet says NSW will join other states in pushing for reform, while Daniel Andrews wants 50-50 split on hospital funding

Michael McGowan and Adeshola Ore

24, May, 2022 @7:28 AM

Article image
Victorian Greens to preference Labor above Liberals as major parties make health pledges
Samantha Ratnam rules out deal with the Liberals, will direct preferences to ‘progressive’ candidates

Benita Kolovos and Adeshola Ore

09, Nov, 2022 @6:02 AM

Article image
Beware Victorian politicians pledging to cure the health system
A rash of major health announcements is sure to spread further before the state election – but the devil is in the detail

Benita Kolovos

26, Aug, 2022 @8:00 PM

Article image
Qld announces reopening plan; ACT hotspot status ends tonight – as it happened
All today’s news as it happened

Mostafa Rachwani and Amy Remeikis (earlier)

18, Oct, 2021 @8:26 AM

Article image
‘They text each other all the time’: Perrottet and Andrews embrace the benefits of a united front
The close relationship between the New South Wales and Victorian premiers is a jarring shift from the political pandemic theatre of the last two years

Michael McGowan and Benita Kolovos

28, Jan, 2022 @7:00 PM

Article image
‘It’s a grey wash’: Liberals frustrated over preselections in NSW and Victoria
MPs say candidates need to better represent the community, after Natalie Ward loses preselection battle

Michael McGowan and Adeshola Ore

29, Nov, 2022 @7:14 AM

Article image
Guardian Essential poll: 64% of young voters would consider backing independents in NSW and Victorian elections
After success of federal ‘teals’, about half of all respondents are thinking about a shift away from major parties

Benita Kolovos

08, Sep, 2022 @5:30 PM

Article image
What the new year of preschool education means for parents and children
Explainer: Children in Victoria and NSW will have access to a year of play-based learning before they start school

Benita Kolovos and Tamsin Rose

16, Jun, 2022 @7:11 AM