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March for Paediatric Services Huge Success

March for Paediatric Services Described as a Huge Success says Tariana Turia,

Member of Parliament for Te Tai Hauauru; and Maori Party Health Spokesperson

Thursday 10 August 2006

The amazing drive and commitment of the Whanganui community has been praised today by local MP for Te Tai Hauauru, Tariana Turia.

“I was really moved to see that even at our lowest point, when the lives of children and mothers are at risk, when the ambulance service is in crisis, when the hospital obstetric and paediatric services are threatened, that people have pulled together, to make sure their voices are heard” said Mrs Turia.

“I am especially impressed by those Hospital Board Members who have had the courage to speak out, who had the decency to walk, shoulder to shoulder, with the members of our community most affected” said Mrs Turia.

“And yet despite the outpouring of anger and disbelief of the public that this crisis is even happening, the DHB Chief Executive releases a statement yesterday saying “nothing has changed” said Mrs Turia.

Memo Musa’s statement that “if anybody needs to go to any other hospital, whether it is Starship, Wellington, Palmerston North, or elsewhere, then this will be decided by the doctors” offers little comfort to Whanganui said Mrs Turia.

“Mr Musa is opting to place all the risks in the hands of our medics, thereby absolving management of their responsibility for getting into this predicament in the first place” said Mrs Turia. “The Hospital management appears happy to relegate Whanganui hospital to the rural outback”.

“The crucial issue is, if obstetrics and paediatrics remain in crisis, there will be a flow-on effect to other services” said Mrs Turia.

“I say, all power to the board members who have spoken up, and demonstrated their leadership to the constituents who elected them to that role” said Mrs Turia.

“I know that there will be others, people like Ailsa Stewart - who know the internal workings of the hospital like the back of her hand - who will be throwing their hands up in horror at what is going on” said Mrs Turia.

“We must all pull together and put a stop to this nonsense” said Mrs Turia. “Our babies, our mums, Whanganui deserves much better than this”.

“I am really pleased to endorse the Mayor’s call this morning for a district-wide approach” said Mrs Turia. “And as local Member for Te Tai Hauauru, I would be happy to join the Child Health Recruitment Taskforce to seek a permanent solution to this all-important issue, if an invitation was forth-coming”.

ENDS

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