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Heart Patients Deserve Explanation

Media Release
6 December 2004

Heart Patients Deserve Explanation

The 47 patients who have waited for more than six months for cardiothoracic surgery at Wellington Hospital are entitled to a personal apology and explanation about the delay says New Zealand First health spokesperson Barbara Stewart.

“In September last year Capital and Coast DHB managed to reduce its waiting list to zero but the numbers have crept up again.

“In these days of financial surpluses and with a Government which, to quote the Minister, ‘is absolutely committed to providing first-class health services’, a delay of more than six months for vital surgery is inexcusable.

“According to the Minister, the Government is undertaking the largest public hospital upgrade programme ever in New Zealand but this is cold comfort to people languishing on waiting lists for lifesaving heart surgery.

“It is a disgrace that heart patients have to wait six months for surgery in the capital city of a developed nation.

“An explanation to each of those patients is the least the Minister can do and an apology wouldn’t go amiss either,” said Mrs Stewart.


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