Tamworth MP Kevin Anderson is calling on the state government to release funding to start the planning of the redevelopment of Gunnedah Hospital.
"The government's commitment to provide for a $53 million redevelopment is welcome but it needs to be backed by cold hard cash," Mr Anderson said.
"With the NSW budget to be delivered next month, I am calling on the government to include funding that will accelerate the planning process."
Mr Anderson said he wanted to see planning for the redevelopment begin this financial year.
"The clinical services plan is already nearing completion, focusing on the future needs of the Gunnedah community, including medical, surgical, maternity and obstetric services," he said.
"It's now time to take the next step.
"Unless local health facilities are improved, it will be even more difficult to attract the doctors and other health professionals needed to help ensure local residents receive the best health care possible."
According to Mr Anderson, funding for planning will help ensure construction begins as soon as possible, providing a valuable injection of funds into the Gunnedah community.
"Construction of NSW government projects, such as the $53 million Gunnedah Hospital upgrade play an important role in supporting local tradespeople and associated businesses," Mr Anderson said.
"We need the NSW budget to include the necessary funding to accelerate the planning process and I won't stop pushing until those funds are allocated."