Collaboration at the heart of health reform How do you successfully deliver a complex hospital redevelopment project with two clients, changing contract conditions, and a completion date brought forward by one year? GHDWoodhead’s Senior Interior Designer Donna Rafie reveals the secret to the successful delivery of the Modbury Hospital Redevelopment. In April 2015 GHDWoodhead was appointed as the Lead Architect for the Modbury Hospital Redevelopment. Located in Adelaide’s northern suburbs, Modbury Hospital provides health care to more than 38,000 people each year. Part of the Government of South Australia’s largest-ever transformation of the public health system, Modbury Hospital was to become the new home of state-of-the-art rehabilitation facilities. “Health care needs have changed since the hospital was built in the early 1970s. In the past, hospitals were designed to deal with acute medical crises, like heart attacks or major accidents,” Rafie explains. “Today, our hospitals also need to care for people who have multiple, complex conditions and chronic diseases like diabetes. Dealing well with these different health needs means redesigning how we care for people.” With an emphasis on flexibility and functionality, the design took shape around three pods of activity: a hydrotherapy pool, generic treatment spaces, and specialist treatment spaces joined to the existing hospital building through a covered walkway. Comprising new build and refurbishment works, both design and construction had to be undertaken within an operational hospital environment. With restricted access to the site and limited documentation of existing plant and services, there was the challenge of ascertaining the exact location and dimensions of existing medical equipment, gasses, and services while designing to meet strict clinical standards. Yet much of the complexity of this project lay beyond the project’s technical challenges. GHDWoodhead was engaged by the Department of Transport, Planning, and Infrastructure (DPTI) under a new procurement methodology that had never been employed on a health project before. Once the design had reached 80% completion, GHDWoodhead and its sub-consultants were novated to the managing contractor, Built Environs. GHDWoodhead’s streamlined approach to design and procurement created the efficiencies this programme-driven project needed. Originally scheduled for completion in 2018, due to the interface with the other Transforming Health projects the completion date was brought forward to 2017. “We were committed to finding innovative ways to meet our client’s timeframe. On the other end of these deadlines were real patients and health care professionals who needed certainty that they could transfer seamlessly from one place to another,” Rafie says. Donna Rafie explains the primary importance GHDWoodhead placed on responding to end-user needs. “We worked closely with DPTI and SA Health through the development of the project brief and scope, which was followed by a detailed user consultation process. We listened closely to end-users to understand their needs.” The Specialist Ambulatory and Rehabilitation Centre (SPARC) opened its doors in April 2017. Accommodating 60 – 70 outpatients per day in addition to inpatients, the facility comprises a hydrotherapy pool, gym, therapy garden, treatment spaces and administration accommodation. The therapy pool has been designed to meet the specific requirements of patients needing aqua-therapy. “There is no direct precedent for this facility in Australia, it sets a benchmark for remedial treatment nationally,” Rafie explains. So what was the key to the success of this project? “Collaboration is an overused term at the moment, but that really was the secret of this project’s success,” Rafie says. “Through our proactive, solutions-focussed approach GHDWoodhead and Built Environs worked together with clinicians to deliver an excellent rehabilitation facility on time and on budget.” About Donna Rafie | Senior Interior Designer As a key figure in GHDWoodhead’s national health architecture team, Donna has built a strong specialist team in South Australia: Donna’s team brings a fresh design approach to health projects based on their sensitivity to the health needs of patients, the working needs of clinicians, and the operational needs of today’s health sector. Donna’s team regularly draws on the diverse expertise of the wider GHDWoodhead network, working with specialist health teams from Queensland to Qatar.