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Radiographer strike: yet more chaos under Hodgson

Hon Tony Ryall

National Party Health Spokesman

8 September 2006

Radiographer strike: yet more chaos under Hodgson

Yet another crisis is pushing the health system to the verge of chaos, says National's Health spokesman, Tony Ryall.

He is commenting as seven DHBs around the country prepare for a radiographers’ strike next week that will paralyse hospitals and affect thousands of patients. The Bay of Plenty DHB is talking to the Army about mobile support teams, and warns of major delays in its emergency department.

"This industrial action will bring hospitals to their knees in many parts of the country,” says Mr Ryall, the Bay of Plenty MP.

“This strike will be far worse than the junior doctors’ strike because there is no one else in the public system to do the radiographers’ work. Eighty per cent of patients need to see a radiographer.

"Right now hospitals are facing this strike and warnings of a second and third strike. The junior doctors’ dispute goes on. And the senior doctors are publicly in revolt over the Government's waiting list cull.

"The Prime Minister has to realise that Health Minister Pete Hodgson's bungling is pushing the health system to the verge of chaos.

"All the while, thousands of sick people are languishing untreated. This will get even worse if there is a strike next week.

"The people getting hurt are not the wealthy, but the poor and disadvantaged. They are ordinary people who can't go private and are missing out because of the electives crisis and industrial strife. And what hurts them most is that Mr Hodgson says he is in Parliament to represent them.

“Mr Hodgson has ignored this growing chaos as he fronts for Labour's pledge card rort. He should spend less time strategising about Labour's health, and more time worrying about the patients' health.”

Hospitals in seven DHBs will be affected by the latest industrial action – Hutt Valley, Lakes, Bay of Plenty, Tairawhiti, Canterbury, Southland and Otago.


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