Wi-fi while you wait at Nepean Hospital

Two new "patient experience officers" will greet arrivals at Nepean's emergency department and the COVID-19 clinic - part of the state government's response to the pandemic.

As part of the program, patients will also receive access to free Wi-Fi, mobile phone charging stations, additional power points, water and other refreshments, information sent to their mobile device about what to expect during their stay, fact sheets on their particular condition/ treatment options and ongoing care instructions after discharge - all in multiple languages. Advice in multiple languages will also be given on safety, hygiene and COVID-19 symptoms.

The funding boost to the Patient Experience Program is part of the NSW Government's $800 million investment to support the health system's response to the COVID-19 pandemic and an $8.6 million expansion of the Patient Experience Program, the first of its kind in Australia.

The new patient experience means an an additional 86 full time equivalent staff will be recruited to 50 hospitals across NSW, with facilities operating COVID-19 clinics a priority. From this 86, there will be eight additional staff across Nepean, Blacktown, Fairfield and Liverpool hospitals, two staff at each hospital.

Patient Experience program staff receive specific training from the NSW Ministry of Health Patient Experience Team, Service NSW, and their Local Health District, to ensure they are well qualified to provide this extra support to patients, carers and visitors.

Minister for Health and Medical Research Brad Hazzard said the recruitment of new positions is already underway, and there has been overwhelming interest to participate in this exciting program.

"This program has already been immensely valuable at the pilot sites, and extending this extra support across NSW is very timely as we continue to combat COVID-19," Mr Hazzard said.