Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


21 Health Boards Brace For Significant Cuts

The entire country faces longer waiting lists, cuts in services, and threats to quality and safety because of significant widespread cuts in health funding, National's Health spokesperson Roger Sowry said today.

Secret pre-Budget Ministry of Health figures released by Mr Sowry show that all of the country's 21 District Health Boards face real cuts in funding in the next financial year.

Collectively the District Health Boards face a funding cut of $23.261million from their allocated funding for the current 2000-01 financial year. In their current contract the DHBs receive funding of $3,332.708 million. Next year they will get only $3,309.448 million. Facing the biggest squeeze, the South Island will be stripped of $15.319 million.

Seven of the 21 DHBs face no obvious decrease but are big losers as well. Any 'small gains' will fail to keep up with last year's inflation rate of 3.1%, recent wage increases, and higher drug costs due to the lower dollar.

"Annette King complained in 1998 that Crown Health Enterprises were struggling to meet day-to-day expenses due to lack of funding. National had effectively got rid of the deficits prior to the last election.

"In the 18 months she's been in charge, health providers are much more seriously in the red because she's failed to secure appropriate funding. The deficit throughout the country has been estimated conservatively as being about $60 million for the current financial year. At the same time hospitals have been put through an unnecessary and expensive health restructure.

"The health deficit blow-out also comes at a time when the Government has committed $80 million to a bank people don't want, and put $180 million towards the arts.

"What's more, the Government is saying DHBs will have to find their own way out of the financial hole the Government's dug for them.

Minister of Finance Michael Cullen said in Parliament on 2 May 'any boards that do face the prospect of deficits... are expected to develop management plans that will bring them back within the budget'.

"This Government promised to make health its priority but instead it's stripping money out of the DHBs and telling them 'you sort it out'. Alarmingly, the 21 DHBs will now seriously contemplate cutting health services to keep afloat," Mr Sowry said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news