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Minister’s Address Positive But Strategy Needed

1 May 2006

“Health Minister’s Address Positive But Strategy For Unmet Health Needs Required”

“Health Minister Pete Hodgson’s key address is welcome and positive but we still need a strategy to address the health needs that we are struggling to provide and are not providing,” said Mr Ian Powell, Executive Director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists, today.

“His emphasis on greater cooperation between district health boards, his myth-busting over public hospital productivity, and his dismissal of privatisation of core public health services, for example, are very encouraging.”

“But the system is struggling to meet health needs such as chronic illnesses and there is no effective strategy to address the unmet need of patients waiting for both first specialist assessments and for elective public hospital treatments such as surgery.”

“Senior doctors and other health professionals want to actively engage with the Health Minister in working together to develop these strategies.”

“It is health professionals more than anyone else who understand what can work best and most effectively in improving access to much needed health services,” concluded Mr Powell.

ENDS

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