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


Minister Must Address Mental Health Problems

Minister Must Address Mental Health Problems

ACT New Zealand Health Spokesman Heather Roy today called on Health Minister Annette King to consider changes to Labour's mental health policy, in light of reports that an Auckland couple now lives in fear after the release of their son who, they have been told, has paranoid schizophrenia.

"This situation highlights the difficulties faced by medical profesionals and families. While community care began as a useful initiative, it has now become an unbalanced situation with almost zero institutional care," Mrs Roy said.

"With the widespread use of recreational drugs having increased over the years, mentally ill users are also becoming harder to control, and doctors can only be asked to admit the most serious cases - a lack of beds can only be changed at a political level.

"Auckland's predicament is particularly severe, and on-call medical and nursing staff are expected to make risky decisions on a regular basis. Meanwhile, last year's closure of the Rangituhi Unit has worsened Wellington's mental health situation - now that most long-term mental health beds have ben closed, the number of acute beds is dramatically reduced.

"In the face of such serious problems - and the growing number of patients who slip through the cracks of our fragmented mental health system - the Labour Government has steadfastly refused to act.

"Instead, Health Minister Annette King places as many layers of responsibility between her self, and the decisions affecting patients, as possible. She now has the perfect position - whereby she gives the direction, but medical professionals get the blame when things go wrong.

"This problem will not go away until the Minister takes some responsibility. Government policy must change. We will continue to see more and more situations like this one, and tragedies, if a series of inquiries habitually blames the last person to care for the patient - as we saw with the cases of Lachlan Jones and Mark Burton," Mrs Roy 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