COMMUNITY HOSPITAL: Dr Jim Eadie, CEO Dr Mark Radford, dentists Phuong Pye and Jonathan Pye with hospital manager Leith MacMillan.
COMMUNITY HOSPITAL: Dr Jim Eadie, CEO Dr Mark Radford, dentists Phuong Pye and Jonathan Pye with hospital manager Leith MacMillan. Rhiannon Tuffield

Surgery resumes at Lady Bjelke-Petersen community hospital

FOR THE first time since closing its doors last year, the Lady Bjelke-Petersen Community Hospital will begin first surgeries today.

Newly appointed provider, South Bank Day Hospital, successfully secured the contract for paediatric dental cases ahead of the official opening in July.

At the hospital to embrace the day was a mix of local specialists and team members from Brisbane.

Among the team was anaesthetic nurse Lyn Sullivan, who has worked on and off at the hospital for the past 35 years.

Ms Sullivan was left devastated when the hospital closed last year but remained hopeful it would reopen.

"It's a very special moment and it's great for our community, it's definitely something we needed," she said.

"Just to provide all the facilities we're going to be providing, and it'll save our older patients from having to travel far away for treatment."

Hospital manager Leith MacMillan said it had been a "whirlwind" to see the project finally come to fruition.

She said the takeover of the hospital fitted in with the provider's philosophy to support community healthcare.

"It's an important day for the community because it's being able to now have a service and a private health facility that the patients can now use instead of having to travel to other sites," Ms MacMillan said.

"To walk in and to see everything shut down only to have it open up again has been a wonderful thing to witness."

The two days of lists this week include paediatric dental surgery for nine young patients, headed by local dentists and anaesthetists. A further surgical session has been scheduled for the 20th and 21st June.

As the new health service provider, South Bank Day Hospital is now in the process of sourcing and supplying instruments and equipment in order to bring back other medical specialists.

CEO Dr Mark Radford said the reopening of the hospital was a significant day for the community.