SICK newborn babies can now be treated close to home after Armadale’s Hospital new neonatal unit was officially opened on Wednesday.
The new $450,000 unit is equipped to help mothers experiencing low to moderate risk pregnancies and can provide safe care for babies born as early as 34 weeks with minimal complications.
The unit will have a paediatrician on call around the clock, apnoea monitoring, love level oxygen therapy and nasal/oral gastric feeding, as well as a raft of new equipment.
While the unit was built with room for eight cots, only four will be operational to begin with and the other four can be used if demand increased.
Health minister Roger Cook said the new neonatal unit was part of Armadale Hospital’s ongoing upgrade.
“This new unit means more local mums can have their babies closer to their home and fewer babies will need to be transferred to other hospitals,” he said.
“It improves the quality of care offered to the residents of Perth’s south-eastern suburbs.”
Armadale MLA Tony Buti said the unit should become a well-used local resource.
“Each year more than 2,000 babies are born in the maternity unit at Armadale Hospital, which has served the local community since 1928,” he said.
“The new and enhanced neonatal unit – more than 90sqm in size – is a great addition to the hospital.”