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Disability service audit focus far too narrow

Disability service audit focus far too narrow

The recent announcement of the independent audit of Focus 2000’s disability service delivery for the Ministry of Health is too limited and risks misrepresenting broader problems with disability service delivery in New Zealand.

While this initial examination is a positive development, Disabled Persons Assembly (DPA) is calling for the Ministry of Health to expand the audit to incorporate a wider range of disability service providers.

“A single-focus audit is far too small. Disability service delivery problems extend much further than one organisation and are not limited to just procedures, financial or managerial issues,” says Gary Williams, Chief Executive Officer of DPA.

“We regularly hear of real concerns in service provision across the whole range of disability services. So we know that this audit needs to have a broader focus.

“Resolving deep-seated problems within disability service delivery depends on the Ministry of Health listening to disabled people’s experiences with different providers, respecting those opinions and involving them centrally in designing services that best suit their needs” Gary Williams says.

“Disabled people regularly tell us about being patronised, not being allowed choices, about providers leaving them stranded unexpectedly, rough handling, injury, abuse and a lack of respect, ” adds Mike Gourley, President of DPA.

“How will this narrow audit benefit people that use the services of other providers who experience these types of problems?” Mike Gourley asks.

“The audit is a good chance for one organisation to improve its performance, but to create a better deal for all disabled New Zealanders government and the Ministry of Health needs to commit to a, bigger picture,” says Gary Williams.

ENDS

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