Serco discovers that detention centres are so yesterday’s market

That’s right, Serco now sees the health sector as a new area in which to profit. Clearly increased public funding on health is a controversial idea in the 21st century:

The [Western Australian] State Government has named private company Serco Australia as its preferred option to provide non-clinical support services to the $2 billion Fiona Stanley Hospital.

Health Minister Kim Hames said Serco Australia Pty Ltd had been chosen due to its local, national and international experience in facilities management service.

The selection comes nearly a year after the State Government called for expressions of interest.

The services that Serco will potentially provide include engineering and building maintenance, security, ground maintenance, linen, catering and cleaning.

“During the evaluation, the Government team reviewed sites in Australia and internationally where Serco already provided health support services,” Dr Hames said.

“At every hospital, staff and patients confirmed that services were of the highest quality and worked cohesively with public sector clinical staff.

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“I would like to take this opportunity once again to reassure staff working in support services in existing hospitals that no permanent member of staff will become redundant as a consequence of the decision to outsource non-clinical services at Fiona Stanley Hospital.”

Both parties will now start contract negotiations with finalisation expected later this year.

The 783-bed Fiona Stanley Hospital is scheduled to open in 2014.