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Celebrating 10 years of Sydney Local Health District

Celebrating 10 years of Sydney Local Health District.

Graphic with text; 10 year celebration
SydneyConnect Image: 10 year celebration

Sydney Local Health District is today celebrating 10 years since its formation, with health care, and how it's delivered, being transformed to cater for the changing needs of the community.

"I'm proud to lead a District of more than 14 000 people - doctors, nurses, midwives, allied health workers, researchers, administration and support staff - who are dedicated to caring for our patients, their families and the community," Dr Teresa Anderson, the District's Chief Executive, said.

"Our staff make a difference to the lives of others 24-hours a day, every day of the year. I value what they do. They play an important role in our community," she said.

The District was established on 1 July 2011 as part of national health reform, with NSW the first state in Australia to implement locally-managed health districts.

The changes returned decision-making about how health care is delivered to the local level and gave the District more resources and greater responsibility.

The District is governed by a Board with inaugural chair Ron Phillips guiding the organisation until late 2020, with Victoria Weekes currently acting in the role.

The District is home to more than 700,000 people and every day more than one million people come into the District to visit, study and work.

On a typical day across the District there will be:

  • 120 ambulances arriving at our hospitals
  • 461 people seeking treatment at our Emergency Departments
  • 458 new people being admitted as an in-patient at one of our hospitals
  • 1739 people occupying a hospital bed of whom 789 are over 65 years old
  • 115 separate procedures performed and
  • 2303 people attending an outpatient service (excluding COVID-19 related services)

The District spent $1.99 billion providing health care to the people of NSW in the 2019-2020 financial year.

Data shows 44 per cent of residents living in the District were born overseas. About 200 languages are spoken in the local community with 55 per cent of the population speaking a non-English language at home.

Based on projections from the NSW Department of Planning and Environment, the District's population (as at 2016) is projected to grow by 36 per cent by 2036.

The District is known for its world-class clinical services, cutting-edge research, leading staff education and training, strong clinical and corporate governance and financial accountability.

During the past 10 years, the District has invested $1.5 million in the ideas of staff through the innovation challenge The Pitch, and shared ideas and new models of care via the annual Innovation and Research Symposium.

The District has strengthened its ties with its culturally and socially diverse community through collaboration, to deliver accessible, inclusive, culturally-appropriate and holistic health care services.

The District has a valuable partnership with the Aboriginal Medical Service Redfern and Metropolitan Local Aboriginal Land Council and is committed to improving health outcomes for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who live in our District.

The District has longstanding relationships with multicultural leaders and works closely with them to effectively support the health and wellbeing of the culturally and linguistically diverse community.

The District has joined with other government agencies and non-government organisations to support those who are most vulnerable in the community - including the homeless, the elderly and people living with a disability.

Over the past decade, there have been many breakthroughs, innovations and challenges - none more so than the evolving COVID-19 pandemic.

The District has been at the forefront of the state's response to COVID-19, with staff working at testing clinics, surveillance sites, Special Health Accommodation and now, vaccination centre staff at Sydney Olympic Park, RPA and Sydney Airport have administered more than 350,000 vaccines.

The District has a blueprint for delivering health care into the future, which includes new models of care, digital innovation and large-scale infrastructure projects to meet the needs of its growing community.

The District is preparing to officially open the Stage One $341 million redevelopment of Concord Hospital; the $750 million redevelopment to transform RPA has been fast-tracked; the Parent and Baby Unit at RPA will open later this year; the RPA Health One at Green Square will begin construction this year; and planning for the redevelopment of Canterbury Hospital is underway.

"All of our achievements are a testament to the hard work, commitment and resilience of our staff. I look forward to being able to celebrate our 10 year milestone with staff in the future and, in the meantime, to continuing our work together to deliver high-quality patient and family-centred health care for our community," Dr Anderson said.