Take a tour of new hospital's emergency department
MOOLOOLABA resident Ashleigh Whisson had never been to an emergency department but when her American bulldog Daisy scratched her eye yesterday, her doctor said to get straight to the Sunshine Coast University Hospital at Birtinya.
The new facility opened its emergency department at 7am and Ms Whisson was one of the first through its doors.
She was surprised there was no lineup - by the time she finished her paperwork, a nurse was ready to see her.
"It's the first emergency room I've ever been in to be honest...everyone was really friendly, efficient," she said.
"I expected a really long wait but I hadn't even finished the paperwork and there was already a nurse there to take me through."
Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service director of emergency medicine Ben Cross said after years of planning staff were excited to be at the huge new facility.
He said in the first few hours 18 patients had already been treated, including a motor vehicle trauma patient and a person suffering chest pain.
"Thankfully everyone is well," Dr Cross said.
More than 20 doctors and 30-40 nurses would man the emergency department during a busy shift, he said.
Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service chief executive Kevin Hegarty said the first emergency department patients had been admitted to the hospital wards.
"It's a very big day," he said. "We've been working hard on this day for many years."
Nambour General Hospital's emergency department remains open, while Caloundra hospital's emergency department has closed, with specialist emergency staff moving to the Sunshine Coast University Hospital.
Caloundra hospital's former emergency department is now a minor injury and illness clinic, open 9am-9pm.