Calvary Health Care Ltd Annual performance statement 2013-14

Calvary Health Care ACT delivers public health and hospital services from Calvary Health Care Bruce and from Clare Holland House in Barton. Calvary's services are available to any person in need, and we provide comfort and healing mainly to ACT residents and people from surrounding communities.

Calvary Health Care ACT provides services on behalf of the ACT Government. Funding and services are negotiated annually and formalised in the Calvary Network Agreement.

Calvary Health Care Bruce is a fully accredited health service comprising 275 beds in the Bruce and Barton campuses. The modern facilities are recognised for contemporary and multidisciplinary team-based care. At both campuses the natural environment contributes to holistic healing.

Calvary Health Care Bruce is Canberra’s second major public hospital and health service, and works in partnership with other acute care and community services. The ACT Government and Calvary are committed to expanding the services on the campus to meet the needs of the growing ACT population.

Calvary enjoys a reputation in the Canberra community for exemplary care. Services at the Bruce campus include:

  • a 24/7 emergency department
  • intensive and coronary care
  • medical and surgical inpatient services
  • maternity services
  • aged care and rehabilitation services
  • voluntary psychiatric services
  • specialist outpatient clinics, and
  • the Hospital in the Home service.

Calvary Health Care Bruce is a teaching hospital associated with the Australian Catholic University, the Australian National University and the University of Canberra.

Calvary Health Care Bruce operates the ACT Specialist Community Palliative Care Service.

This comprises:

  • Clare Holland House, the 19-bed inpatient and respite hospice
  • palliative care outpatients clinic, and
  • palliative care in residential settings.

The Calvary services in the ACT continue the mission of the Sisters of the Little Company of Mary by responding to the needs of the communities we serve.


During 2013-14, Calvary Health Care dealt with:

  • 55,276 emergency department presentations (preliminary)
  • 5051 elective surgery procedures (preliminary)
  • 880 emergency surgery procedures (preliminary)
  • 1760 births (preliminary), and
  • 24,915 cost weights total activity (preliminary).

During 2013-14, Calvary implemented a consistent program of facility and service enhancement. Service enhancements included:

  • refinement of patient flow processes, featuring improved discharge planning
  • expansion of the Calvary Hospital in the Home program
  • formalising more efficient and rapid admission of patients from the emergency department
  • introducing 24-hour emergency surgery capability not reliant on on-call staffing
  • developing and introducing the continuity of a midwifery care model to operate in parallel with the traditional maternity model of care
  • designing and commencing both a Rapid Assessment and Planning Unit and a Medical Assessment and Planning Unit for medical patients
  • designing and commencing a four-bed Stroke Service Unit, and
  • commencing specialist outpatient clinics.
  • Facility enhancements in the reporting period included:
    - design and construction of the Calvary Birth Centre
    - design and construction of the Rapid Assessment and Planning Unit, the Medical Assessment and Planning Unit and the Stroke Service Unit
    - establishment of the dedicated outpatient clinic accommodation, and the fit-out of office and administration accommodation for the consultant medical officers
    - progressive replacement of floor coverings in public and clinical areas in accordance with hygiene and infection-control best practice
    - introduction of public wi-fi in the emergency department and public areas of Calvary
    - upgrading of utilities, and
    - establishment of the Calvary Health Care Bruce Business Support Facility in Thynne Street, which is formative to the expansion of clinical services on the Bruce campus.

We are extremely proud that these facility enhancements were completed without disrupting the provision of clinical and medical services. These achievements represent the collective work and collaboration of our facilities team, our users, consumers and project groups, and a diverse group of contractors.

In particular, Calvary recognises the involvement of the Barmco Mana Partnership, an ACT 2014 Telstra Australian Business Awards finalist in the micro-business category, who provided us with a construction and engineering consultancy built around re-engineering existing facilities to accommodate new and contemporary clinical and other services. Their philosophy is strongly aligned with our value of stewardship.

Issues and challenges

Calvary Health Care Bruce is responding to the recognised growth in demand for public health services in the ACT and across Australia. The immediate issue at the Bruce campus is the pressure on car parking that, at busy times, inhibits convenient access to the campus for patients and visitors.

The 2014-15 ACT Budget includes funding for the construction of a 700-space multi-level car park. This project will commence in the second half of 2014 and is expected to take 12 months. The nearby Bruce CIT has offered off-site parking for Calvary staff, and this will ensure the least possible impact on patients and visitors while a large part of the existing car park capacity is taken up with the building works.

While originally seen as a northside hospital in Canberra, Calvary Health Care Bruce is becoming increasingly central in population distribution terms, with ACT population growth rates and numbers being highest in Gungahlin and Molonglo. This foreshadows growing demand for Calvary's services and significant variations in the demographic of our nearby populations.

Calvary and the ACT Government work closely to monitor these trends and to ensure that the services most needed are accessible and available. In the meantime, role delineation supported by formal clinical services networks between Calvary Health Care and Canberra Hospital and Health Services ensures efficient and clinically safe pathways and agreed procedures and protocols to govern the transfer and escalation of patient care.

Future directions

The ACT Government Health Infrastructure Program describes the plans for facility and service expansion on the Calvary Health Care Bruce campus. This program identifies as a priority for 2014-15 the centralisation of elective ophthalmology services at Calvary as well as additional beds in the second year of a four-year program at Calvary Bruce.

The general expansion of the public hospital capacity at Calvary Bruce has been foreshadowed. This will be enabled by the relocation of Calvary Private Hospital from the sixth floor of the Xavier Building later in this decade.

Complementing these physical developments, Calvary Health Care Bruce will continue to improve processes to make more efficient use of the resources at our disposal. This embraces bed management and patient flow, improved theatre utilisation, expanded multidisciplinary care commenced earlier in the patient journey, and increased engagement with patients around their acute and ongoing care programs.

Calvary Health Care Bruce will also assess the opportunities for safe and high-quality care to be provided in non-acute settings. The existing Hospital in the Home program and the successful provision of palliative care in a residential setting provide ample evidence that patients can be properly cared for, feel connected and safe, and make clinical progress in a non-acute setting.

Calvary is committed to partnering with the ACT Government to explore and embrace new technology and new thinking, whilst still holding firm to kind and compassionate human values, and to continue to provide consistently high-quality care to our patients and support to their families.