LABOR has pledged to spend $15.2 million upgrading Tomaree hospital if it wins government later this month.
Port Stephens MP Kate Washington and shadow health minister Walt Secord announced the proposal on Monday. It would include upgrading the medical ward and adding rehabilitation and dialysis services.
The upgrade would also add radiology services including x-ray and ultrasound staffed seven days a week, a new helipad and at least two new palliative care beds with extra staff.
Labor said the exact scope and services would be determined in collaboration with Hunter New England Health, doctors, nurses and other health workers.
The existing hospital has a 14-bed acute medical ward including two single-bed ensuite rooms used primarily for adult palliative care patients.
Its five-bed emergency department saw 11,106 patients in the past year, with 1110 facing a wait of more than five hours.
“Tomaree Hospital is overstretched and as the local population has more than doubled over the past few decades the hospital just has not kept pace, especially with the massive influx of tourists each year,” Ms Washington said.
“Only Labor will deliver a hospital upgrade for the Tomaree Peninsula to tackle the growing local need for improved healthcare,” she said.
“Members of the local community, patients and local health workers have been calling for this much needed upgrade for a long time”.
The hospital pledge follows Premier Gladys Berejiklian on Sunday announcing a $780 million redevelopment of the John Hunter hospital if her government wins another term.
Labor on Sunday vowed to match that promise.