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Maurice Williamson On The Right Track

Maurice Williamson On The Right Track

Heather Roy MP Tuesday, August 26 2008

National MP Maurice Williamson got it right on TVNZ's 'Agenda' programme, when he had the courage to advocate public-private partnerships in Health, ACT New Zealand Health Spokesman Heather Roy said today.

"Mr Williamson's public chastisement and Tony Ryall's criticisms of Labour's 'secret agenda' to amalgamate District Health Boards show that National is clearly not going to change a single thing in Health," Mrs Roy said.

"Amalgamating some DHBs would be a good thing - abolishing them all would be even better. The debate over how many DHBs New Zealand should have is purely academic. The system is only held together by the commitment and dedication of doctors, nurses and other health professionals at the front line.

"DHBs are a phoney democracy - people think they elect a Board to make decisions for the benefit of local populations, but Boards only exist to implement the government of the day's Health policies.

"As such, the 21 DHBs exist for one reason only: to pretend Kiwis make decisions locally when, in fact, Health is centrally-controlled by the Government. It is this central control that has seen Health services continually decline to the point where too few New Zealanders can access the quality treatments they so desperately need.

"The Government should hand the running of Health services over to doctors and nurses, and contract with the private sector when it makes sense to do so. The tragedy is that neither Labour or National are willing to do a single thing to change the current failing system; it appears that task will fall to ACT and Mr Williamson," Mrs Roy said.


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