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Steering Group Formed While Teeth Decay

Media Release

6 April 2006

Steering Group Formed While Teeth Decay

"The announcement of yet another steering group, six months after the launch of a $100m five-year programme to improve free dental health services for under 18s, is a pathetic response to a serious health problem," says New Zealand First’s health spokesperson Barbara Stewart.

“A facilities and services review was carried out less than two years ago and cynical taxpayers could be excused for wondering why a national steering group should be necessary to repeat the exercise.

“The stark reality is that dental health standards for children and adolescents are deteriorating throughout the country and immediate remedial action is necessary. The incidence of dental problems in children is increasing daily with the most publicly obvious being the growing numbers of children whose teeth are so decayed dental work can only be carried out under general anaesthetic.

“This delay is yet another example of bureaucracy gone mad in the health system – the need is obvious, the funds are there to meet that need but further examination is deemed necessary by a bunch of bureaucrats whose salaries could be put to much better use,” said Mrs Stewart.


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