Tuesday, 14 March, 2017 marked the end of an era – the closure of the original linkway connecting Westmead Hospital and The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, and the opening of the new temporary linkway.
This week, staff from both hospitals, who worked across the Westmead precinct when the original linkway was built in 1995, came together to mark the occasion.
Between them, the staff have more than 200 years’ experience with the hospitals, having worked at either Westmead Hospital or at Camperdown (prior to the children’s hospital moving to Westmead), since the 70s and 80s.
Prof Danny Cass, a trauma surgeon, worked at Westmead Hospital until 1995 when he moved to The Children‘s Hospital at Westmead – where he has been ever since.
“When the children’s hospital was first built in 1995, the linkway wasn’t constructed until a few months later. Before that, mothers visiting their newborns in the NICU had to be wheeled along the footpath from Hawkesbury Road,” Danny said.
All staff, patients and visitors can use the temporary linkway between 6am and 10pm. Outside of these times, access is by staff swipe card only.
The temporary link will be decommissioned in early 2019 as the new central acute services building will have two linkways – one for patient transfers with staff access and one for the public.
The second part of the linkway, which runs into the Westmead Institute for Medical Research (WIMR), is still under construction but will be completed by April.