LCQ13: Public hospital redevelopment/expansion projects

     Following is a question by the Dr Hon Joseph Lee and a written reply by the Secretary for Food and Health, Dr York Chow, in the Legislative Council today (October 26):


     With the ever-increasing demand for medical services by residents in Hong Kong, many public hospitals require expeditious redevelopment or expansion as their space is no longer sufficient to cope with such demand, and their design also fails to meet the operational needs.  In this connection, will the Government inform this Council whether it knows:

(a) which public hospitals will be redeveloped/expanded in the coming five years, the order of priority and the factors to be considered by the authorities in determining such order of priority;

(b) the progress of the redevelopment/expansion projects in (a), as well as a list of the respective dates of application for funding and the expected dates of commencement and completion of the various works projects;

(c) the breakdown of the cost estimates of various redevelopment/expansion projects, the breakdown of the cost estimate for conducting redevelopment/expansion works in each of the public hospital concerned, and the total estimated costs for various works projects;

(d) the anticipated numbers of additional hospital beds and increase in patient attendance after completion of the redevelopment/expansion projects of various public hospitals; and

(e) whether the authorities will increase the manpower of nursing staff and allied health staff accordingly after the various public hospitals have been redeveloped/expanded; if they will, of the details; if not, the reasons for that?



(a) A number of hospital redevelopment/expansion projects are underway and will be completed in the coming few years.  These include the Expansion of Tseung Kwan O Hospital (TKOH), the Redevelopment of Caritas Medical Centre (CMC) Phase 2 and the Redevelopment of Yan Chai Hospital (YCH).  In addition, the Administration is also preparing for the Expansion of United Christian Hospital (UCH) and planning for the Reprovisioning of Yaumatei Specialist Clinic (YMTSC) at Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH).

     Apart from carrying out redevelopment/expansion projects of existing hospitals, the Administration will also construct new hospitals as necessary to address the demand for healthcare services.  Hospital under construction includes the North Lantau Hospital Phase 1, and new hospitals under preparation include the Tin Shui Wai Hospital and the Centre of Excellence in Paediatrics at Kai Tak Development Area.  The North Lantau Hospital Phase 1 is scheduled for completion in 2012, and the other two hospitals will be completed in 2016.

     In determining the order of priority for the development of new hospitals and the redevelopment/expansion of various hospitals, the Administration will take into account the future population growth and ageing in the region, the demand for healthcare services, the overall provision of healthcare services in the various clusters under the Hospital Authority (HA), as well as the development of public and private healthcare services.

(b) Information of the three ongoing redevelopment/expansion projects is shown in Annex.

     In the 2011-12 Policy Address, the Government has announced the preparation for the Expansion of UCH.  It is estimated that funding approval will be sought from the Legislative Council (LegCo) in mid-2012 for the preparatory works.  Besides, the Administration has also planned for the Reprovisioning of YMTSC at QEH.  A "design and build" approach will be adopted for this project, and tendering procedures will commence before seeking funding approval from the LegCo which will be based on the tender price.  It is estimated that funding approval will be sought from the LegCo in 2013 with a view to completing the project in 2016.

(c) The cost estimates of the three ongoing redevelopment/expansion projects are as follows:

Project Title               Estimated Expenditure($M)
Expansion of TKOH                    1,944.9
Redevelopment of CMC Phase 2         1,719.6
Redevelopment of YCH                   590.5

     According to the preliminary estimate, the entire project of the Expansion of UCH will cost over $7 billion, and the Reprovisioning of YMTSC at QEH will cost about $1.4 billion.

(d) Upon completion of the Expansion of TKOH, an additional 178 in-patient beds and 22 consultation rooms in the specialist out-patient (SOP) department will be provided.  If the manpower of healthcare professionals permits, it is expected that the annual capacity of SOP attendances will increase up to about 80,000.

     Besides, upon completion of the Redevelopment of CMC Phase 2, an additional 53 in-patient beds, 32 day beds and 20 Geriatric Day Hospital places will be provided.  The redeveloped CMC will be able to handle a maximum of about 600,000 out-patient attendances annually.  In other words, the annual out-patient attendances will increase by about 270,000.

     Although no additional beds will be provided upon completion of the Redevelopment of YCH, with an increase in the number of consultation rooms from 36 to 54, the capacity of the general out-patient clinic and specialist out-patient clinic will be increased and the service capacity will be enhanced by up to 50%.

     Preparation for the Expansion of UCH and the Reprovisioning of YMTSC at QEH is still underway.  We will make a more detailed estimate on the numbers of additional beds and attendances to be provided after completion of these redevelopment/expansion projects when we are about to seek funding approval.

(e) To cope with the service demand, HA will deploy and gradually increase manpower having regard to the service needs, development of technology, completion of new hospitals, expansion and redevelopment of the existing hospitals, staff turnover, as well as the overall provision of healthcare services in the various clusters etc.  Meanwhile, the number of staff that would be recruited is also affected by the manpower mobility among HA, private hospitals, social welfare and rehabilitation sectors.  HA will conduct an annual review on the requirement for additional manpower.  For example, recruitment of about 1,700 nurses and 590 allied health staff is planned for 2011-12.

Ends/Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Issued at HKT 16:48