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CDHB to Privatise Part of Community Mental Health

CDHB to Privatise Part of Community Mental Health Service

“The Canterbury District Health Board is flouting the Government’s opposition to privatisation with its decision to put another part of its mental health services out to tender”, said Nadine Marshall, Secretary of the National Union of Public Employees (NUPE).

She was responding to the CDHB announcement today that the service provided by four residential rehabilitation establishments that house up to 40 patients with varying degrees of psychiatric disability are to be contracted out.

“NUPE finds the privatisation move especially surprising in the light of the recent comments by the Minister of Finance, Dr Michael Cullen, that indicated that further privatisation of state services was off the political agenda”, said Nadine Marshall. “The CDHB seems to be going down a path that is contrary to the Government’s policy”.

Nadine Marshall said that the decision was clearly motivated by the need to cut costs. “This announcement comes at a time when the CDHB is dumping thousands of patients off its surgical waiting lists and on the back of a budget that failed to deliver health services in Canterbury a bigger share of the tax dollar”.

“By contracting out the responsibility of the care of these mental health patients the CDHB is looking to wash its hands of some of the most vulnerable people in our community”, said Nadine Marshall.

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