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Cancellations part of Labour’s 180,600 disgrace

Heart surgery cancellations part of Labour’s 180,600 disgrace

Heather Roy Tuesday,

19 July 2005 Press Releases - Health

News that heart patients are languishing in Christchurch Hospital beds while a private hospital has the capacity to operate on them is an utter indictment on the Labour Government’s failure to address the patients,” ACT Health Spokesman Heather Roy said today.

The Press reported today that Christchurch Hospital sent a patient home just hours before he was due to have heart surgery because of a shortage of intensive care beds.

Ten people are in Christchurch Hospital beds waiting for a heart operation. Yet across town private hospital St George’s has been contracted to perform 24 publicly funded heart operations on Waikato patients and says it can perform an additional 100 heart operations a year.

“What is most disgraceful is at the same time as this happening, Annette King is repeatedly declaring that the private sector is being fully utilised. And it is simply not true.

“The situation is a disgrace. We have at least 11 Christchurch patients who need a heart operation, but they are languishing in hospital beds or being sent home to die, while there is room to do their operations at St George’s.

“It is part of a disgraceful waiting list failure by Labour. Labour has thrown an extra $3.5 billion into health, but the number of patients on First Specialist Assessment and surgical waiting lists has risen from 180,200 when labour was elected to 180,600 in April 2005.

“Labour has spent the money on bureaucracy.

"Not only is Annette King failing patients - worse she is deceiving Kiwis over the numbers and her failure to use the private sector. She has to go.

“ACT says it is imperative that District Health Boards look to private hospitals to perform operations when public hospital surgery is cancelled,” Mrs Roy said.


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