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A case of déjà vu

A case of déjà vu

11 May 2005

Media release: Napier Public Health Action Group (Inc).

“Annette King has promised Wellington that it will eventually get its new hospital (Dominion Post, 10 May 2005) despite a projected 20 percent increase in costs; this is déjà vu for Napier residents”, said Don Stuart, Chairman of the Napier Public Health Action Group (Inc).

“We remember the multi-million dollar over-runs when the regional hospital was built and Napier Hospital closed in the mid-1990s. “We also remember the multi-million dollar cost over-runs when the District Health Board decided to build an Acute Assessment Unit last year, over-seen by Mrs King’s husband.

“We further remember Mrs King promising, before the 1999 general election, that Napier Hospital would be re-opened by the Labour Party if it won; a promise also made by Helen Clark and Michael Cullen”, Mr Stuart said.

“A simple, cost effective solution to Wellington’s problem is to re-commission Napier Hospital. It is a modern, earthquake-resistant, tsunami-free, flood-free, MRSA-free public hospital building that only needs refurbishing to become productive again.

“Once re-commissioned, modern technology means that specialists can be ‘dialled up’ to perform intricate surgery, as is shown by the Ministry of Health’s surgery buses”, he said. “It is only a ‘domestic dispute’ between Minister of Health Annette King and Napier residents that prevents Napier Hospital from functioning. “We invite Capital and Coast DHB to consider this much cheaper alternative to their existing plans; materials and labour are in plentiful supply here as well as a pre-built hospital,” said Mr Stuart.

ENDS

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