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Auckland Health Cuts - Buck Stops With King

The Government's underfunding of health is behind impending cuts to Auckland health services and the Auckland District Health Board's dire financial woes, National's Health Spokesperson Roger Sowry said today.

"It is an appalling situation when you have the chief executive of the country's largest district health board questioning whether we have to stoop to having second world health services.

"Auckland District Health Board recorded a surplus of $2.2 million in the financial year to June 2000, our last year of Government. This surplus compares to a deficit of over $72 million after two years of Labour-Alliance underfunding. The Auckland District Health Board has not received enough money to keep up with inflation over the last two years.

"Annette King says she accepts responsibility for the South Island cardiac crisis. Now she has to accept that the buck stops with her in Auckland health too.

"The Minister is underfunding health services and expecting district health boards to continue operating the same services. This means cuts to Auckland health services in line with this Government's lowering of standards and the public's expectations," Mr Sowry said.


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