NorthWest Healthcare announced that it has acquired 4,340 m² of land adjacent to The Hills Clinic mental health hospital, which is operated by Aurora Healthcare.
The land purchase will see NorthWest expand the hospital to accommodate more patients with an additional 85 beds and two-storey therapy rooms, as well as 120-bay basement parking. NorthWest and Aurora are thrilled to announce the initiative that will improve mental health services across the region.
“We are delighted to acquire such a significant development site adjacent to one of our existing hospitals – The Hills Clinic – and to extend our partnership with Aurora Healthcare, with whom we have worked to develop this clinic into a highly valued mental health program,” said Richard Roos, executive director of NorthWest Portfolio.
“The provision of high quality treatment facilities for mental health patients is increasingly essential in our community, and mental health is a materially underserved part of the Australian healthcare industry. . The effects of the pandemic and associated lockdowns have further exacerbated demand for mental health treatment, and we sought to meet this demand in the middle of last year by expanding The Hills Clinic to increase the number of beds by 44% .
“We look forward to increasing this capacity through our new development with Aurora, reinforcing our strong commitment to increasing Australians’ access to mental health.”
NorthWest has invested $80 million in mental health projects that are currently in the construction or planning phase. Aurora CEO Julia Strickland-Bellamy said the hospital expansion will meet area demands.
“The demand for mental health services in this region has grown at an increasing rate. This pressing need for expanded treatment options for the Sydney’s Hills community has today further expanded our partnership with NorthWest’s Vital Healthcare Property Trust,” she says.
“The Hills Clinic is a very successful mental health service model; it attracts patients from across Australia because of its specialist treatment for young adults. This expansion allows The Hills Clinic to further expand its specialist mental health services for our existing patient population, while introducing new treatment offerings to meet demand. Young adults will remain a key part of our expanded service while eating disorders, PTSD for first responders, trauma and addictions are all under review.
The expansion will enhance the patient experience, with additional group therapy rooms, patient activity areas and private doctor consultation rooms all to be built in the planning processes.
“Not only will this meet the unmet demand for accessible private mental health services with purpose-built facilities, but it will also provide recruitment opportunities for psychiatrists, paramedics, nurses and general staff to support this growing service. We look forward to working together to provide essential mental health treatment through this exciting new hospital development,” said Strickland-Bellamy.
NorthWest hopes to begin the development approval process as soon as possible, with a view to beginning construction in 2023. Construction time is estimated to take around 15 months, with NorthWest and Aurora expecting to welcome the first patients by end of 2024.