Royal Adelaide Hospital

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Royal Adelaide Hospital
Royal Adelaide Hospital, Adelaide.jpg
Location Adelaide, South Australia, SA, Australia
Coordinates 34°55′12″S 138°36′33″E / 34.9199°S 138.6091°E / -34.9199; 138.6091Coordinates: 34°55′12″S 138°36′33″E / 34.9199°S 138.6091°E / -34.9199; 138.6091
Care system Public Medicare (AU)
Hospital type Teaching
Affiliated university University of Adelaide
Emergency department Yes
Beds 680
Speciality Burns, Neurology & Neurosurgery, Oral and maxillofacial surgery, Thoracic medicine and Cardiovascular surgery
Founded 1841
Lists Hospitals in Australia
East Wing.
From North Terrace.

The Royal Adelaide Hospital (RAH) is Adelaide's (and South Australia's) largest hospital, with 680 beds. Founded in 1840, the Royal Adelaide provides tertiary health care services for South Australia and provides secondary care clinical services to residents of Adelaide's city centre and inner suburbs.

The hospital is situated in the Adelaide Park Lands on the north side of North Terrace between Frome Road and the Adelaide Botanic Gardens. It is next to both the University of Adelaide and the University of South Australia. The land which it covers is also home to the University of Adelaide's Medical School, the Adelaide Dental Hospital, The Hanson Institute and SA Pathology. It is also in close proximity to the Adelaide Zoo.

The new Royal Adelaide Hospital[edit]

In June 2006 South Australian Premier Mike Rann announced that the government would replace the RAH with a new $1.7 billion hospital, to be called the Marjorie Jackson-Nelson Hospital,[1] however the decision to name the new hospital after South Australia's former governor was reversed in 2009.[2][3]

In June 2007, plans were unveiled by the State Government to build a new central hospital for Adelaide to replace the Royal Adelaide Hospital. To be completed in 2016, the new hospital will be built on the railyards in the Adelaide Park Lands on the north side of North Terrace, between Morphett Street and West Terrace. Plans to build the new hospital proved extremely controversial, with strong political opposition to the change in location and name.[2] In response the state government changed its position and agreed to maintain the original RAH name.[3] However, the issue dominated the 2010 state election campaign, with the two major parties and some minor parties (Save the RAH) fighting over whether to build a new hospital or redevelop the existing site.[4]

The State Government plans that the current Royal Adelaide Hospital will close when the new hospital is completed, and some of the land currently occupied by the hospital will be returned to the Park Lands and incorporated into the Adelaide Botanic Gardens.[5]

In February 2010, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and SA Premier Mike Rann revealed plans for the $200 million SA Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) to be built alongside the new Royal Adelaide Hospital at the rail yards.[6]

The new hospital will have 800 beds (700 overnight, 100 same day), an increase from 680 beds (650 overnight and 30 same day) on the current site, providing the capacity to admit approximately 85,000 inpatients see 400,000 outpatients per year.[7][8][9] 6,000 staff are expected to work at the hospital.[8] The hospital grounds will encompass 10 hectares within central Adelaide.[8] Upon completion, it is set to be the 3rd most expensive building in the world, costing approximately $2.1 billion AUD.[10] Upon completion it will be Australia's most advanced hospital and South Australia's single largest infrastructure project[7]

All beds in the new hospital will be single inpatient beds. It will have 40 operating theatres.[7]

The current Royal Adelaide Hospital[edit]

The Hospital is divided into many different blocks and buildings.

North Wing[edit]

The North Wing is home to wards R3-S3-S5 (Orthopedics), Q3 (Acute Surgical Unit) Q5 (ENT and Eyes), Q6 (Colorectal Surgery), Q7-R6 (Gastric and Upper GI Surgery), Q8—R7-R8-S7 (Medical), R4A (Spinal), R5 (NeuroSurgery), S6 (Breast and Endocrine Surgery, Urology), S2 (Thoracic Medicine), S8 (Geriatric medicine, Infectious diseases unit and Endocrinology) and S5 (Plastics).

East Wing[edit]

The East wing has 10 Wards for Psychiatry, Stroke, Renal, Oncology, Cardiology and Vascular Surgery, including A4-7, B5-8 and C3-6. Ward D6 is currently[when?] under redevelopment and a 9th floor is also being built. New lifts have been installed in the main foyer of the East Wing (which services the whole wing), with a further two in the process of being replaced. The East Wing also houses C-Max (private medical research company), the RAH Cancer Centre, and Outpatient Chemotherapy facilities.

Theatre Block[edit]

All of the 23 Operating Theatres are in this block. All of the treatment centres for the many Specialties covered can also be found in this block, such as Nuclear Medicine and Cardio-Vascular Investigation Unit.

Emergency Block[edit]

The Emergency Department, along with Renal Centre (Dialysis) and other departments, is found in this block. The two Patient Transport Lifts (PTL), which are reserved for patient transport/medical equipment use only, are also in this block. The Emergency department underwent a total refurbishment in 2003, in addition to an extension; it is now a state of the art Emergency facility with 4 specialised Resuscitation/Trauma Rooms, 5 patient care areas (Diagnostics, Admissions, short stay, psychiatric short stay and Fast Track) and also houses the Hospital's Radiology department. The Radiology department runs 24 hours a day and has 2 modern CT machines, two interventional angiography suites, multiple ultrasound and plain x-ray rooms. The Orderlies office is also located in Emergency, along with the ambulance entrance and Triage.


All Specialist offices are found in the Outpatient blocks from levels 3-9. This block has access to the Hospital's helipad, via the Outpatient lifts.

Hone Wing[edit]

The Hone Wing is home to the Department of Radiation Oncology and holds 5 bunkers containing Varian linear accelerators.

McEwin Building[edit]

The McEwin Building is situated to the east of the hospital. It is home to the Sleep Disorders Laboratory, containing four beds (Level 6), and Transfusion (Level 5).

P Wing[edit]

This new[when?] wing holds the 3 unit 33 bed Intensive Care Unit, the Burns Unit (the only international Burns Unit to be verified by the American Burn Association) and PARU (Post-Anaesthetic Recovery Unit), all on level 4.

Residential Wing[edit]

This was built in the 1970s and was initially for students who would be working at the RAH too. However, later on, it was being used by many other students and patients relatives.


Allied Health[edit]

Includes: Audiology, Clinical Dietetics, Clinical Pharmacy, Clinical Psychology, Health Promotion, Nutrition and Food Services, Orthotics and Prosthetics, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Podiatry, Social Work and Speech Pathology.

Department of General Services[edit]

The Department of General Services includes Security, Orderlies, Cleaning, Waste Management (Porters) and Parking. Their office is located in the Residential Wing.

Hyperbaric Department[edit]

The Royal Adelaide Hospital is the only provider of hyperbaric oxygen therapy in South Australia.[11] The Hyperbaric Medical Unit (HMU) has been in operation since 1985 and has been in its current location since 2001.[11][12] The principal treatment equipment is a pair of twin-lock, multiplace hyperbaric chambers. One of these chambers was the first rectangular steel chamber in Australia.[13][14] The HMU co-ordinates the Divers Emergency Service (DES), a telephone-based consultation service for diving-related matters within Australia, the Southern Pacific and Southeast Asia.[15]

Nursing Department[edit]

The Nursing Department oversees all nursing aspects of the Royal Adelaide Hospital.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ ABC News, Wednesday 6 June 2006
  2. ^ a b No Cookies | The Advertiser
  3. ^ a b Cookies must be enabled. | The Australian
  4. ^ Tory Sheppard, Adelaide Now, 15 March 2010
  5. ^ Hospital land may be turned into gardens, Sydney Morning Herald, 11 June 2007, Accessed 13/6/7
  6. ^ Brad Crouch, Adelaide Now, 27 February 2010
  7. ^ a b c new Royal Adelaide Hospital
  8. ^ a b c HOME | SA Health Partnership
  9. ^ About new RAH | About the Hospital
  10. ^ Campbell-Dollaghan, Kelsey (5 December 2014). "Australia Has Two Of The Most Expensive Buildings Ever Built". Gizmodo Australia. Retrieved 26 December 2014. 
  11. ^ a b "Hyperbaric Medicine Unit". Retrieved 2013-04-03. 
  12. ^ Acott, C (1992). "Clinical review Royal Adelaide Hospital hyperbaric medicine unit 1990". Journal of the South Pacific Underwater Medicine Society 22 (1). Retrieved 2013-04-03. 
  13. ^ "Divers Emergency Service". Retrieved 2013-04-03. 
  14. ^ Williamson, JA (1994). "Royal Adelaide Hospital Hyperbaric Medicine Unit: A progress report.". Journal of the South Pacific Underwater Medicine Society 24 (1). Retrieved 2013-04-03. 
  15. ^ "Hyperbaric Medicine Unit". Royal Adelaide Hospital. Retrieved 17 April 2013. 

External links[edit]