The Western Australian (WA) government has announced plans to build a A$1.8bn ($1.2bn) maternity hospital within the Fiona Stanley Hospital precinct, reported

It has scrapped initial plans to build the hospital at the Queen Elizabeth II Medical Centre in Nedlands.

The decision has been made to avoid parking issues and disruption to patients and staff at the neighbouring Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital.

The government stated: “Building the hospital at the QEII site would have caused significant disruption to the neighbouring Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, which would have resulted in patients and staff being impacted, higher build costs and the hospital opening much later than planned due to the complex nature of the build.”

Development of the hospital at the new site will require the same investment and has been funded as part of the budget.

The government has spent A$10.4m on the new hospital project, which in turn “assisted in informing the need for an alternative site”.

WA Health Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson said: “It is critically important that we co-locate the women’s and newborns’ hospital to a tertiary hospital so that our sickest women have access to an ICU, which is what makes Fiona Stanley the obvious choice.”

The government expects the new hospital location will mean a quicker build by 2029 rather than 2034 as with the previous plan.

Meanwhile, in an additional boost to maternity services, the government announced that Osborne Park Hospital will undergo expansion to enhance its obstetrics, gynaecology and neonatal services, and feature more birthing suites and theatres.

The government also plans to expand neonatal services at Perth Children’s Hospital.