Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Maternity services in Buller facing the axe

Maternity services in Buller facing the axe

“Surely if there is the ability to provide emergency birthing services how can it be that normal deliveries are not possible in Westport?” asks Democrats for Social Credit health spokesman David Tranter.

While most people no longer expect logic from those running the public health system the chair of the WCDHB, Paul McCormack, will have West Coasters really scratching their heads at his pronouncement on maternity services at the last board meeting; "the board had believed it could not provide safe, routine, normal deliveries in Buller", but followed this with "Kawatiri (Westport maternity facility) still offered antenatal, postnatal and emergency birthing services". (Westport News 24 Feb.).

The matter arose when a board member put a motion calling for planned birthing to be reinstated at Kawatiri. This was defeated 9-2 and was even voted against by one of Buller's two board representatives.

The management shambles surrounding Buller maternity services was highlighted by a board member's enquiry as to what the board had done to address safety issues raised in its 2007 review of maternity services. Management's response was that a "progress report" would be provided to the next DHB meeting.

“With seven years to take action it has to be asked why the present situation has arisen” Mr. Tranter said.

“Given that management also admitted it has yet to address many recommendations in a Coast-wide maternity services review completed nine months ago it is obvious that either West Coast management is not up to the task - or there is an underlying agenda to completely close maternity services in Buller.

“Management's attempts to fudge the issue were typified by another piece of meaningless bureaucratic jargon when DHB programme director Michael Frampton told the board meeting there had been “slippage” in addressing review recommendations. "Slippage" - for seven years?

“Evasion, incompetence and misleading the public would be a more accurate description” Mr. Tranter said. The Concise Oxford Dictionary definitions of "slip" include to "lose footing and balance", and "blunder", which in my view gives an accurate description of management's performance over Buller maternity services. Even now management's proposed maternity "work programme" - whatever that means - is to be "delivered over the next 12 to 18 months" - hardly indicative of urgency.

“By coincidence I am presently writing an address to be given by the Democrats to a Perinatal Mental Health Trust Conference” Mr. Tranter said. “A reading of the Trust's website reveals the great vulnerability of many mothers and babies and the need for sensitive support - something which hardly equates with management's agenda to send Buller women to Greymouth away from their friends and families at this crucial time in their lives.

“Several decades ago before successive governments decimated New Zealand's rural hospital network many of those facilities provided safe maternity services - and at remarkably small cost. Yet after innumerable so-called health "reforms" and the corporatisation of health management these services are being whittled away. Given the huge reductions in previously proposed budgets for re-building Greymouth and Westport's hospitals West Coasters can be forgiven for suspecting that ending Westport maternity services is just another step in centralising Coast services to Christchurch. It is an indictment of the meaningless role of having seven locally elected members on DHB boards that even these people are so often willing to endorse the political/bureaucratic agendas to undermine local health services which they are supposedly there to advocate for” Mr. Tranter said.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Law Commission: Review Of Search And Surveillance Act Begins

“For example, the Act was drafted before cloud-based storage of data was commonplace. In the light of these and other developments, the Commission will be examining whether the investigative powers in the Act are sufficient for law enforcement purposes. We will also consider whether the safeguards that surround those processes are adequate.” More>>

ALSO:

Houses, Campers And Cops: LGNZ Media Briefing

At their quarterly media briefing today Local Government New Zealand addressed areas where local authorities are feeling pressure and outlined their approach for the upcoming local body elections in September-October. More>>

ALSO:

17 Year Sentences In Baby Moko Case: Attorney General On Plea Bargain

“The Crown’s decisions in this case, including the decision to accept the manslaughter pleas, were motivated by the need to secure convictions for this horrendous killing and to avoid the significant risk that either of the defendants could escape such a conviction because of evidential issues.” More>>

ALSO:

As Govt Cuts Lobby Anti-Smoking Group Funds: On The Nation - Plain Packaging Debate

Imperial Tobacco leaves open possibility of law suit against New Zealand government if plain packaging is introduced, as planned. Says it’s a “last resort” but “of course we will defend the right to use our brands”. More>>

ALSO:

No Rail For New Harbour Crossing: National Giving Up On Rail In Auckland

The National Government’s decision to scrap two planned rail lines in Auckland shows it is giving up on a city-wide rail network in Auckland, and on thousands of commuters who sit in traffic jams every single day, the Green Party said today. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Ombudsman’s Verdict On Paula Rebstock And Ian Rennie

Unfortunately, the brave and damning report by Ombudsman Ron Paterson on the “flawed” and “unfair” inquiry conducted by Dame Paula Rebstock into events at MFAT pulls back the veil on a far wider issue. More>>

ALSO:

Charities' Report: Stressed Families - Overstretched Services

“Like so many of the whānau and families they serve social service organisations are under huge financial stress. The support demanded from desperate people in communities is far outreaching the resources available.” More>>

ALSO:

Detention: Wellingtonians Protest Treatment Of Refugees

Peace Action Wellington (PAW) and around 50 Wellingtonians blockaded the Australian High Commission, creating a symbolic detention centre to protest the Australian Government's policy of mandatory offshore detention for refugees and asylum seekers. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news