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Medical Equipment at the Old RAH

The Hon. J.A. DARLEY (14:45): My questions are to the Minister for Health and Wellbeing regarding surplus medical equipment. Firstly, can the minister advise what happened to the medical equipment that was previously located at the former Royal Adelaide Hospital; in particular, which organisations were the recipients of this equipment? Secondly, what equipment could be reused in South Australia and to what other uses could it be put?

The Hon. S.G. WADE (Minister for Health and Wellbeing) (14:46): I thank the honourable member for his question and his interest in the South Australian public health system. At the time of the move from the site of the old Royal Adelaide Hospital to the new, there was significant medical and non-medical stock that was not relocated. A decommissioning team had responsibility for the complex process of deconstructing what was a large hospital. Where possible, the surplus stock was relocated to SA Health sites across South Australia. There were 11 metropolitan services that received equipment and 15 rural and regional services. SA Ambulance also received some decommissioned stock.

Some examples of the equipment reassigned and reused in this way are hospital beds, operating theatre lights and sterilisation equipment. I am advised that the total capital value of the reassignments to, shall we say, South Australian health agencies was approximately $3.3 million. In addition to this reassignment of equipment, there were also donations to around 60 community groups and charities in South Australia, such as Scouts; public schools, both secondary and primary; community sports groups; research organisations; adult education organisations; and charitable groups such as the Salvation Army. I am advised that the total value of donations to these organisations was in the order of $1.8 million.

Finally, there were donations overseas to developing countries made through Rotary's Donations in Kind program, which worked in partnership with local charities. These donations of repurposed medical and non-medical equipment went to more than 20 developing nations and were worth approximately $13 million. Those 22 nations straddle the globe, including nations as far away as Kurdistan and as close as Timor-Leste.

An example of that overseas charitable support was given in this week's Sunday Mail, which told the story of donations to the Kakuma general hospital, Kenya, which services the Kakuma Refugee Camp. Hospital beds, mattresses, monitors, an operating table and an ultrasound machine, together with wheelchairs, were amongst the stock donated. The donation was facilitated by a charity called Barefoot to Boots, which was founded by Adelaide brothers Awer Bul and Awer Mabil. I congratulate them and all of those involved in these charitable groups for the work they do.

All South Australians can be proud of our participation in charitable work through donations made by SA Health from the old RAH. South Australians can be assured that the decommissioned stock left behind at the old RAH was disposed of both responsibly and generously.