Next step in $1b hospital for Vic's Melton

Christine McGinn

Residents in one of Australia's fastest-growing suburbs are another step closer to getting a major hospital with a regional service provider named to run it.

Western Health will operate the planned Melton Hospital, after caring for nearly a million patients in the city's west at its other sites, the state government announced on Tuesday.

"As one of the fastest-growing communities in Australia, Melton locals deserve a world-class, 24-hour public hospital, right on their doorstep," acting health minister Martin Foley said.

The proposed 24-hour hospital's location, size and range of services is still being worked out, but a tender has gone out to a shortlist of six consultants, the government says.

The hospital is reportedly expected to cost about $1 billion.

The government has already committed more than $2 million for a business plan to deliver a hospital at Toolern, on the outskirts of Melton and master planning will start when early next year.