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Ryall should check the facts

25 July 2006

Ryall should check the facts

National Party Health Spokesman Tony Ryall has shown he doesn't understand the basics of government process, Health Minister Pete Hodgson said today.

Mr Ryall pointed to one line in the Hawke's Bay District Health Board's Statement of Intent, claimed it proved that the DHB would cut elective surgery numbers and then claimed the Minister had approved this.

Ministers do not approve the Statements of Intent of Crown Entities. However, the Minister of Health does approve the District Annual Plans of DHBs at a later date, which include their commitments to elective surgery volumes – Hawke's Bay is committing to an increase for the 2006/07 financial year.

"I suggest in the future that Mr Ryall delays his shrieking until he checks the facts," Pete Hodgson said.

"The plan that I will agree with the Hawke's Bay DHB will include an increase in elective surgery. Crisis averted."

ENDS

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