History of the Lorne Community Hospital

Lorne Community Hospital was established over 50 years ago and is highly valued and respected by the local community.

The Lorne Community Hospital was officially opened in 2006 and has been completely re-developed on its original site. It provides a modern work environment which is well equipped with current technology and equipment.A broad range of services include: Aged Residential, Acute Hospital, Emergency, Community Health, Home Nursing, Medical, Rehabilitation and Palliative Care.

Lorne Community Hospital (LCH) is located in the township of Lorne on the Great Ocean Road, within one hour travel from the major centres of Geelong and Colac and 2 hours from Melbourne. Lorne is an idyllic location on the Surf Coast which boasts spectacular coastal scenery, renowned surfing spots and beautiful white sandy beaches. Lorne also boasts a spirited arts community, boutique shopping strip filled with cafes, gift stores and eateries or discover the area’s stunning surrounds in the Great Otway National Park.


Quality Accreditation
Lorne Community Hospital proudly holds nationally accredited status with the Australian Council of Healthcare Standards (ACHS) Equip 5 and with the Aged Care Standards and Accreditation Agency.
Community Served
The service catchment area is identified as Lorne and surrounding districts, including Aireys Inlet, Moggs Creek, Eastern View, Fairhaven, Deans Marsh and Wye River . All these communities are located within the Surf Coast Shire, except Wye River, which is part of the Colac Otway Shire.

In total there are approximately 2,500 permanent residents in these communities. In the 2006 census there were 440 families with children living permanently in Lorne and surrounding communities. Lorne-Aireys P-12 School draws students from surrounding towns.

Currently, 17% of the combined population of Wye River, Aireys Inlet and Lorne is over 65. This figure is expected to increase to 25% by 2031 (Population Forecast, forecast.id, Surf Coast Shire, 2008).

The more aged people residing in the community, the greater the burden from nonfatal diseases. For example, the years of life lost to disability for a 70 year old is twice that of a 50 year old. As Lorne and surrounding areas of Wye River, Aireys Inlet and Deans Marsh have a greater percentage of older people, the disability burden, and years lost to disability, is greater when compared with the national population.

Seasonal Fluctuation
Lorne Community Hospital is the only Hospital on the Surf Coast, an area which extends from Torquay to Lorne including a number of small coastal towns. The population in the area swells dramatically with visitors and holiday home owners on weekends and during summer holidays, and has further increased with the ring road bypassing Geelong.

Community demand for Urgent and Acute care services increases dramatically in these peak periods.

Conferences, school camps and major events bring additional visitors to the Lorne area. The “School Leaver” weeks bring an influx of around 1,500 young people for 2-3 weeks during November/December, followed by the Falls Festival (16,500), the Pier to Pub swim and Mountain to Surf run (8,000).

The Hospital works with the Surf Coast Shire, local Ambulance and event organisers to ensure adequate first aid and a co-ordinated medical response is available during these periods.

Threat of bushfire and heat wave impact in the busy summer period is a growing risk which is considered in service planning.