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Health Decision-Making Bureaucratic Paradise

Media Release

08 April 2008

Health Decision-Making Bureaucratic Paradise

The area of service planning and new health intervention assessment has become a bureaucratic paradise and is ripe for overhaul, says New Zealand First health spokesperson Barbara Stewart.

“Decision making has grown into a cumbersome, long-winded exercise which results in everybody having an input but decision making deferred for years.

“At the bottom of the pile, as usual, are the patients who miss out on treatment the rest of the developed world takes for granted.

“PET scanning is a prime example of bureaucratic dithering. The business case was put together by doctors but eventually rejected by medical administrators – very few with any sort of medical qualifications and most of them watching the financial bottom line.

“Anyone who doubts the need for streamlining should look at the Service Planning and New Health Intervention Assessment – Framework for collaborative decision-making on the Ministry of Health’s website http:/ – see attached (PDF).

“With a population of just over four million we obviously have total overkill in this area – time for the scalpel to be wielded,” said Mrs Stewart.


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