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“Doubling Of Orthopaedic Operations Great News”

26 May 2004

“Doubling Of Orthopaedic Operations Great News”

“The Government’s announcement of the doubling of the number of orthopaedic operations for hips and knees over the next four years is great news for patients, and senior doctors,” said Mr Ian Powell, Executive Director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists, today.

“Implementation of this positive announcement will relieve the pain and suffering and improve the quality of live for thousands of New Zealanders. Improving patients’ quality of life is one of the most rewarding things senior doctors can experience.”

"District health boards must now ensure that their public hospitals are adequately resourced with the right workforce levels to provide this increased level of surgery. If DHBs fail to plan for their workforce needs then they risk being forced into the more expensive alternative of contracting to private hospitals. Contracting to private hospitals is likely to be wasteful and more expensive because the premium they will charge to ensure the operations are profitable.”

“Effective workforce planning will also be improved if the national collective agreements for senior doctors (which have been going on for over a year) and nurses (which are about to start) are quickly achieved.”

“The approach taken by the Government over increased orthopaedic operations should be extended to all areas of unmet clinical need including chronic illness.”

“Both the Government and the Orthopaedic Association deserve congratulations for the work they have put into achieving a very good outcome,” concluded Mr Powell.

ENDS

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