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


Dunne: Time for Govt to deal to Pharmac

Wednesday, 8 June 2005

Dunne: Time for Govt to deal to Pharmac

The Government needs to work out how much longer it will stand by as Pharmac flip-flops on medicines that keep many New Zealanders alive and healthy, United Future leader Peter Dunne said today.

Speaking after Pharmac backtracked this morning on subsidising Ventolin asthma inhalers after previously announcing it would only subsidise Salamol, he called for Pharmac to be brought to account.

"This mob acts in haste and repents at leisure - but invariably at the expense of ill New Zealanders who don't need these cowboys playing games
with their medication," Mr Dunne said.

"You're left asking 'what next?'" he said, pointing to recent debacles with cholesterol and blood pressure medications.

"Each one of these situations has impacted on the lives and well-being of many New Zealanders. At best, they have been mucked around, at worst their health has been compromised and their stress levels will have gone through the roof.

"The situation is reaching crisis proportions and sadly it will be a crisis 12 years in the making. In 1993 the Government launched Pharmac as New Zealand's drug-buying agency as a mechanism to curtail the growing level of spending on pharmaceuticals that threatened to blow the health budget.

"However, after more than a decade of operating under a very narrow cost-cutting mandate, Pharmac has developed a culture of price-squeezing zealotry, employing techniques such as an insistence on sole-supply contracts, cheaper generic alternatives and reference pricing to keep New Zealand's medicines expenditure to a minimum. "We all accept that there can't be unlimited pharmaceutical spending, but as more and more New Zealanders become adversely affected by Pharmac's restrictive policies, it is clear the pendulum has swung too far in the direction of cost-cutting," Mr Dunne said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Ministerial Inquiry: Broad Look At Mental Health And Addiction Services

The Government has taken a major step towards improving mental health and addiction services with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announcing details of a ministerial inquiry.

The Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction will be chaired by former Health and Disability Commissioner, Professor Ron Paterson, and will report back to the Government by the end of October. More>>


Wealth: Two NZers Own More Than Poorest 30%

A staggering 28 per cent of all wealth created in New Zealand in 2017 went to the richest 1 per cent of Kiwis, while the 1.4 million people who make up the poorest 30 per cent of the population got barely 1 per cent, according to new research released by Oxfam. More>>


Employment: Joint Working Group On Pay Equity Principles Reconvened

Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety, Iain Lees-Galloway, and Minister for Women, Julie Anne Genter, are reconvening the Joint Working Group on Pay Equity Principles as the next step in pay equity for New Zealand women. More>>


Hapū: Prime Minister And Clarke Gayford Expecting First Child

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and her partner, Clarke Gayford, have announced that they are expecting their first child in June. “We’re both really happy. We wanted a family but weren’t sure it would happen for us, which has made this news unexpected but exciting." More>>


Gordon Campbell: on the inquiry into the abuse of children in care

Apparently, PM Jacinda Ardern has chosen to exclude faith-based institutions from the government’s promised inquiry into the abuse of children in state care. Any role for religious institutions – eg the Catholic Church – would be only to observe and to learn from any revelations that arise from the inquiry’s self-limiting focus on state-run institutions… More >>

Gordon Campbell: On Jim Anderton
For anyone born after 1975, it is hard to grasp just how important a figure Jim Anderton was, for an entire generation.
During the mid to late 1980s, Anderton was the only significant public figure of resistance to the Labour government’s headlong embrace of Thatcherism...More>>


Gong Time: New Year's Honours List

Jacinda Ardern today congratulated the 179 New Zealanders named on the 2018 New Year’s Honours List. “Although this list was compiled and completed by the last government, it is a pleasure to welcome in the New Year by recognising exceptional New Zealanders,” Jacinda Ardern said. More
Full list

Roads: National launches bid to save highway projects

The National Party has launched a series of petitions aimed at saving regional highway projects at risk because of the Government’s obsession with Auckland trams…More>>





Featured InfoPages