Erected in the 1930's, Inverell's original hospital building houses a rich history and countless memories for staff, residents and past patients.
A small, but monumental, gathering was held to mark the commencement of 1B or phase two of Inverell's $60 million hospital redevelopment on Friday.
Awaiting the results of a heritage report, Richard Crookes Constructions will soon begin the task of gutting and refurbishing the old hospital building.
Community health services including adult ambulatory care, mental health, women's and children's services, oral health, chronic disease treatment programs and allied health will relocate to the building once completed.
Richard Crookes Constructions senior project manager Jason Gollan estimated around 80 per cent of the structure's design was already completed.
"We're just waiting for the heritage report to come back at the moment. We will reconcile a number of plaques within the old hospital into one common area. There is also bits of plaster board and skirting that has significant heritage detailing that you don't see anymore.
"It's a balance between handing over a nice, modern facility and keeping some of those heritage elements. The biggest thing we'll keep is the front entry. The archways will stay and we're re-configuring the ramps.
"It'll look quite nice once complete."
Representing NSW Health Infrastructure Stuart Diver said refurbishing the old hospital building would allow for better collaboration between all acute and community health being under one roof.
"We also have the extension of the new car park underway now, as well as the fit out of the CT scan room within the new hospital building. We are anticipating a 12-month schedule with construction completed next May," he said.
Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall acknowledged Inverell Shire Council and the community's sustained pressure on the state government to secure funding for the huge project.
"It's fair to say we wouldn't be standing here today commencing work on stage two of this project without it.
"To make sure that not only was the commitment to this redevelopment secured back in 2015, but then when it became clear we needed more than the original envelope of $30 million, the community again rallied together and we secured another $30 million to turn this into a $60 million redevelopment," he said.
Mr Marshall said for the first time in Inverell's history, primary, allied, community and ambulatory health services will be situated in one large, modern building.
"We will not be limited by poor, physical health facilities. We will only be limited by the medical staff and expertise that we can acquire to Inverell, and that's something we've never been able to say before," Mr Marshall said.
Deputy mayor Anthony Michael said it was important the end result be great for the Inverell community once finished, and well into the future.
"With everything under one roof it's going to be a great asset to the town and will hopefully attract more doctors to relocate to Inverell and work at the hospital."
Inverell hospital health service manager, Katherine Randall, said staff have adapted well to working in a new environment after the official opening of the new hospital building on May 25.
"When you go through the building everyone is smiling and happy. We can actually deliver the health care that is required in 2020 out of a new, modern facility which is amazing," she said.