New centre proposed

Proposals are being discussed for a new health centre for Palmerston.

East Otago Community Health Trust chairwoman Mary O'Connell told the trust's annual meeting on Monday it was envisaged the old Palmerston health centre building owned by the trust be demolished and a new one built on the same site.

South Link Health, the operator of the East Otago Health practice, supports the development of a new building and was prepared to negotiate a long-term lease, Mrs O'Connell said.

Two doctors and a nurse practitioner work from the health centre as well as holding clinics in Waikouaiti and Hampden.

The trust had been advised the new building would need to be 400sq m and cost between $600,000 and $900,000, Mrs O'Connell said.

Community support would be paramount, and considerable fundraising would be needed, she said.

The Palmerston Health Centre on District Rd was built as a cottage hospital in the 1920s and later used as a maternity unit before being taken over by local doctors as a health centre.