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Hospitals unacceptably unsafe

Jonathan Coleman MP
National Party Associate Health Spokesman

13 February 2008

Hospitals unacceptably unsafe

The Health and Disability Commissioner has told Parliament that New Zealand's hospitals are unacceptably unsafe, and that the health sector lacks national leadership, says National's Associate Health spokesman, Jonathan Coleman.

"If, after nine years in charge and billions of dollars, Labour hasn't improved the safety of hospital services, it never will."

Dr Coleman is commenting after the Health and Disability Commission appeared before the Health Select Committee today.

"A drive for improving quality healthcare is fundamental to making our hospitals safer. However, there's a lack of leadership and coordination, according to Commissioner Ron Paterson.

"Doctors and nurses are keen to work to improve hospital safety, but many are frustrated by the bureaucratic inertia that the Health and Disability Commissioner has pinpointed.

"There are too many examples of medicine errors and poor quality service for the quality agenda to be ignored.

"More information needs to be made available so clinicians can compare their hospitals' service and performance with others.

"Labour is failing New Zealand patients yet again"


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