Yarram Integrated Healthcare Centre

McBride Charles Ryan

The Yarram & District Health Service (YDHS) Integrated Healthcare Centre is a small-scale healthcare project situated in Yarram, regional Victoria, a three-hour drive from Melbourne’s CBD. This project reveals an innovative approach towards public healthcare with a meaningful significant civic response. YDHS Integrated Healthcare Centre is a vibrant and equitable public healthcare hub for the region, advocating for preventative medicine that brings the community together. This landmark health building celebrates preventative health and serves as an example of what architecture can do to promote proactive health for regional communities, in Victoria, Australia, and across the world.

The design brief called for a state-of-the-art rural healthcare facility, consisting of patient-arrival areas, treatment bays, pathology room, consult rooms, interview rooms, utility rooms, nurse and office spaces with shared networks to the existing local hospital. Retaining and attracting excellent staff (particularly doctors) was a key concern. There was a strong desire to attract the community to use the facility regularly to increase better health outcomes in the town and surrounding areas.

The design decisions of the YDHS Integrated Healthcare Centre brought a functional, beneficial and innovative project to the heart of Yarram, showcasing the beauty and inventive possibilities of future regional healthcare facilities.

The infrastructure for extracting energy from the earth in the form of geothermal energy was instigated as a tool to further the long-term sustainability efforts of the project. The building is well insulated as well as having double glazed windows. Timber was locally sourced and a local company, Radial Timber, uses every part of the log by cutting on the angle radially around the log. The building’s design and layout successfully captures an abundance of natural light, The colonnade roof shades the building and provides outdoor shelter and seating.


Furniture: Workspace, Design Nation, Schiavello, Zenith Interior, Made For, Interstudio. Lighting: Versalux. Finishes: Austral, Viridian, Dulux, Tesrol, Duropal, Austral, VMZINC, Forbo, Zuncalume Corrugate, Radial Timbers. Fittings & Fixtures: Aus Timber, Vertilux, Forbo, Alspec, Caroma.


Photography: John Gollings AM (Image 1, 2, 4), Tim Yi-Ting Lee (Image 3).