A new Indigenous health and aged care precinct is being built on the site of a former hospital located in a coastal suburb of Brisbane.
The Wynnum Hospital site – which closed in 2013 – has been formally handed over to the Winnam Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Corporation by the Queensland Government.
Funded by the federal government, the project will see the abandoned hospital demolished to make way for a multipurpose wellbeing hub.
The hub will house a range of culturally sensitive community services – including a new 30-bed residential facility, some of which will be reserved for palliative care.
In a speech at the handing over ceremony Sunday Winnam chair Aunty Becky Thomson said it had taken a long campaign to acquire the site. “This is a result of a journey that started in 2017 and involved the local Aboriginal communities in instigating a wellbeing precinct in this area.”
The services, said Ms Thomson, would be for everyone in the community to access. “We are inclusive, not exclusive, and we would like everyone to come and enjoy the grounds here and the services that will be provided here. The services will cover from early stages of life to end stages of life and the stages in between.”
Member for Lytton – the electorate that covers Wynnum – Joan Pease was also at the ceremony. She said it was fantastic that the site was going to be rejuvenated.
“Transferring the old Wynnum Hospital site to Winnam is a perfect example of how we can repurpose government assets to benefit our community. This facility will improve access to health services for our First Nations residents and will create good local jobs.”
The state Minister for Health and Ambulance Services Yvette D’Ath said in a statement the hospital’s closure was “a big loss” for locals, “which is why the Palaszczuk Government promised to ensure the site continued to benefit the community.”
More details of the precinct – plus a construction timeline – will be released later this year.
Main image: Hand over of Wynnum Hospital site to Winnam Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Corporation