New FOI documents expose critical problems for Perth Children’s Hospital

January 23rd, 2017 by: Kwinana Electorale Office

- FOI documents flag 16 identified causes and sources of lead contamination

– Released project reports highlight a serious lack of transparency by the Barnett Liberal Government

– A total of 3,012 defects at the hospital, with no certainty around opening date

– Original completion date was in 2015

New FOI documents have exposed staggering details surrounding the defects and construction woes that have plagued the Perth Children’s Hospital.

The documents were released by the Department of Health as part of a Freedom of Information application submitted by the State Opposition, and include minutes from the Project Control Group, Construction Reports and Risks and Issues reports from just last month.

They reveal attempts to resolve lead contamination problems have been unsuccessful and a mechanical clean is required.

The documents also reveal the project has had significant breaches of plumbing regulations, and faulty stainless steel pipe work will require replacement.

The revelations also include 3,012 defects still require attention as of December, problems with fire doors have not been resolved, fire alerts are not working and doors are not yet numbered, with “catastrophic” consequences surrounding the transition to clinical commissioning, as well as the smoke management system remaining a risk.

New ICT systems are not supported internally and are unable to recover information in the event of a major outage and Code Black and Code Red processes are not functioning. In addition the Smoke Management System remains a risk.

The documents reveal one practical completion date of December 12 was “ambitious” after Health Minister John Day said in November the latest date for practical completion was November 30.

In October, Health Department Director General David Russell-Weisz told a Parliamentary Estimates hearing it would take between eight and 14 weeks to commission the hospital after practical completion.

Comments from Shadow Health Minister Roger Cook:

“These documents reveal the shocking truth at the kids’ hospital and Western Australians deserve answers.

“Every Western Australians will rightly be asking – what the hell is going on at our kids’ hospital?”

“The reality of the situation is that this project has had no oversight from anyone around the Cabinet table and it appears the issues at the hospital are worse than we feared.

“The level of dishonesty and lack of transparency around the hospital project by the Health Minister and Treasurer has been appalling.

“It has taken WA Labor to use Freedom of Information laws to understand the seriousness of the problems,
because the Premier and his Ministers constantly try to hide the truth.

“Anything this government says anymore just cannot be believed and here we are just days from the State
Election and no one in the Barnett Liberal Government can tell us when the community will have its hospital
open to treat our sick children.”

Comments from Shadow Treasurer Ben Wyatt:

“Colin Barnett needs to spend less time worrying about an open range zoo and start worrying about our
children’s hospital.

“Just after Christmas the Premier said he was going to give more attention to the issues and take the
hospital over, but he went on leave and has done absolutely nothing about it.

“It seems there is no end in sight and this is despite the Premier saying in September that the hospital
would open before Christmas – a completely fabricated claim.

“There has been gross mismanagement of this major project from the top down – the Premier, the
Treasurer and the Health Minister – they are all responsible.

“While we’ve had faulty panels, an asbestos scandal and a lead contamination crisis, this government has
tried to fool the public into thinking everything was smooth sailing and it wouldn’t cost us a cent.

“It’s time Western Australians were given a full explanation.”

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