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Hodgson's Easter Surprise For Patients

Hodgson's Easter Surprise For Patients

Heather Roy
Thursday, 13 April 2006
Press Releases - Health

The Health Minister's vicious attack on the Hawke's Bay District Health Board today is unwarranted, when the real problem is Labour's over- managed and mismanaged public health system, says ACT Health Spokesman Heather Roy.

"The Minister fakes outrage when he knows this is a serious problem with waiting lists, faced by every Board in the country", Mrs Roy said.

"Hawke's Bay is simply the first DHB honest enough to publicly state the problem and act on it according to guidelines imposed on them by Minister Hodgson's Government.

"Annette King, the previous Minister of Health, spent six years forcing District Health Boards into this terrible situation. Boards have been given the task of nursing her failing health policies and passing the bad news on to patients.

"It is typical of this Labour government to blame people at the front line, when all they are guilty of is administering government policy in good faith.

"This problem is of Labour's own making - their decisions have left Boards with little funding to provide elective surgery.

"Funding that should have been available for elective surgery has instead gone to the increased costs of the Holidays Act and the nurses' pay jolt.

"As from 1 July, further funds will be diverted to cover Labour's removal of asset testing and Boards can expect further industrial unrest over pay.

"Meanwhile 180,000 Kiwis are waiting for health treatment - equivalent to the entire population of Hamilton.

"Hutt District Health Board is considering helping to fund private treatment for people on waiting lists. To escape the hole that Labour has put us in, all Boards should think about this.

"The only Easter surprise for many patients will be further bad news, but if Pete Hodgson is mad at anyone, it should be his predecessor and his Government", Mrs Roy said.


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