TEST RUN: Queensland Ambulance Officers simulate a patient transferral to the Mater Brisbane.
TEST RUN: Queensland Ambulance Officers simulate a patient transferral to the Mater Brisbane. Ashleigh Howarth

Mater passes stress test in 24-hour medical simulation

SICK or injured residents could be receiving treatment at the new Mater Private Hospital Springfield as early as next week.

The $85 million, 80-bed hospital could open its doors as early as Wednesday, about two months earlier than the date forecast when construction began.

Mater Private Hospital Springfield Director Fritha Mackay said the official opening date would be determined following the completion of a 24-hour medical simulation at the facility, which all her staff took part in between 6am on Thursday and 6am this morning.

"Conducting these process simulations is vital to the health and well-being of patients and the hospital community, providing opportunities for staff to perform effectively and efficiently in their new work environment and promote patient safety," she said.

"Following on from our simulation, at this stage, we are hoping for an early opening on October 28. However, if I feel that the hospital is not ready just yet, I won't hesitate to delay our opening by a couple of days."

All of the hospital's staff, including clinical, hotel services and administration, were put through their paces during the 24-hour simulation, re-enacting a number of potential medical scenarios ahead of their grand opening.

All of the scenarios were repeated over four shifts.

Simulation examples included peri-operative admissions through to discharge, including orthopaedic surgery, ophthalmic surgery, endoscopy and gastrointestinal surgery.

Also featured was caring for deteriorating patients in postoperative, ward and radiology areas, a walk-in patient to the reception area experiencing chest pain, a patient ordering a meal using Mater's room service and a transfer of a critically unwell patient to Mater Private Hospital Brisbane, which was done in partnership with the Queensland Ambulance Service.

Mater Education Programs Manager Melanie Barlow said the simulation was a significant event for the medical community globally.

"Mater Education has not found any simulation examples where the whole hospital has been put to the test using members of the community as patients. Other hospitals around the world use simulation mannequins to test patient flows in various areas of the hospital, as separate entities," Ms Barlow said.

"Mater Private Hospital Springfield's simulation activity had theatres running, simulated patients in inpatient wards, the kitchen serving room service and administration staff working as they would in the operating hospital environment."

The new hospital features four digitally integrated operating theatres, a day surgery unit, cancer care centre, medical imaging and family friendly accommodation.

It will provide services including general medicine, medical oncology, dermatology, radiation oncology and ophthalmology.

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