Spotlight on new way of working for health

O3Hub, the first activity-based working space at Westmead Hospital.

The first activity-based working spaces at Westmead and Blacktown hospitals have been captured in a new video showcasing the staff who made the moves a success.

B2Hub at Blacktown and O3Hub at Westmead were a first for Australian hospitals and were designed to support staff to work more collaboratively and effectively in purpose-built workspaces. 

Dr Mark McLean, divisional medical director of ambulatory medicine, said the spaces were suited to clinicians, who were used to working flexibly. 

“I go to an outpatient clinic and I use a room for the morning and then I go to the wards, and I do my work wherever it needs to be done,” he said. 

“This is an extension of the same concept. I come here and I find the space which is right for the task that I'm doing today with the people that I'm working with at this moment.”

Chief medical information officer A/Prof Naren Gunja said people have adapted very quickly to the change because of the benefits it provides.  

“The activity-based workplaces that have been created in the hubs really support workflow. The fact that everybody is in this space makes it quite easy to have small and quick collaborative meetings and resolve issues quickly.

“We practice in a world of evidence-based medicine and the treatments that we used 20 years ago are now forgotten. We are constantly having to change and it takes time to get used to these things, but once we do, we quickly forget that we used to do something in a different way.

“It’s very similar when people move into new office spaces. There is some getting used to this kind of hub workspace but I really like the hub. I think there was a mood and time for change. I think we needed to work differently.”

Staff celebrated with dual “world premieres” at Blacktown and Westmead hospitals last month.

Other ABW projects currently underway include E2, located on level two of Westmead Hospital. A section of E2 will need to be demolished to make way for a linking corridor into the new hospital building. The nursing and clinical support service, including patient flow and after-hours nurse managers, will join Westmead Hospital executive in the new space.  These services are a core function of our hospitals so we are creating a new zone for them in the refurbished E2, allowing a close connection to the new and old buildings.

Staff working at Merrylands Community Health Centre will also adopt ABW as part of the centre’s refurbishment to better support their activities, and to continue to deliver high-quality, patient-centred care. 

You can see the video here. 

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