The boss of Calvary has said the ACT government had not negotiated with the organisation for nearly six months before announcing it would take over the Bruce public hospital.
Calvary national chief executive Martin Bowles said he was only informed about the planned compulsory acquisition of the hospital on Monday, the first time the government had contacted him since November.
Mr Bowles said Calvary was deeply concerned at what this could mean for the 1800 staff working at the hospital.
The ACT government has said staff will retain their jobs when Canberra Health Services takes over the hospital from July 3.
But Mr Bowles said this had created uncertainty for staff who had not been consulted prior to the move.
"There are 1880 people now who are wondering what is going to be next they will have to have changed employment arrangements. It is unacceptable," he said.
"The feedback is some people are quite devastated and quite a few tears today."
The ACT government has said progress is being made so work can begin on a new $1 billion hospital for Canberra's booming north.
Calvary entered into negotiations with the ACT government last May around the future of a proposed northside hospital and the role it could play in the running of the hospital.
"We started a good conversation in May last year that went for pretty much the rest of the year," Mr Bowles said.
"I heard nothing effectively and then I got a call to say, 'Can you come in on Monday [May 8], the Minister wants to talk'. I turn up and she says, 'I'm introducing legislation that will compulsorily acquire your land and buildings and will also terminate the contract you have in place.'"
There were three main issues regarding the negotiation of the contracts, Mr Bowles said.
A.C.T GOVT CALVARY PUBLIC TAKEOVER:
He said Calvary had agreed to the territory holding the title to the land where the hospital was located and further space to allow for future expansion. He also said Calvary had agreed to the ACT government managing the construction of the project.
However, Mr Bowles said there was one area where they did not agree. He said the ACT government wanted to shorten the length of an agreement with Calvary.
The current agreement has 76 years remaining but the government proposed a new agreement which would only be for 25 years. Mr Bowles said Calvary had agreed to a new agreement but not the time. He said the government had not responded to this.
"That's being characterised today by saying negotiations failed and I don't agree, that's not accurate," he said.
"We were open to further conversations, it's probably a hypothetical now so it's hard for me to say but if the government had come back with a realistic view of what might be possible, clearly I would have considered that."
Mr Bowles said that was included in a letter he sent on November 28. He said he did not hear from the government again until Monday when he was told about the proposed takeover.
Calvary is considering its options. Mr Bowles said the organisation had yet to come up with a firm position given he was only informed on Monday.
The ACT government will acquire the land on "just terms" and compensation will be provided. Mr Bowles said the organisation had not made a decision on the amount it expected from this.
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