Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Maternity: Another 'action plan' 'consultation'

Tony Ryall MP
National Party Health Spokesman

9 October 2008

Maternity: Another 'action plan' for 'consultation'

“New Zealanders will see straight through Labour’s nonsense today that it has all the solutions to fix the maternity care crisis that has developed under Helen Clark’s nose,” says National Party Health spokesman Tony Ryall.

"Just like the highly critical cardiac report, the Labour Government is cynically diverting attention from the damning Wellington maternity report by releasing yet another ‘strategic vision’ and ‘action plan’ document for ‘consultation’. There they go again.

“When new mums were being forced to breast feed their babies in waiting rooms next to public toilets Labour didn’t want to know about it.

“When the first time mother lost her baby after being forced to go home six hours after giving birth, Labour was still denying the maternity care crisis. Now, after nine years and just a few weeks out from a general election, Labour is pretending it has the answers.

“Well, if Labour always had the answers, why has it taken nine years for Helen Clark to action them?

"Today's damning report on maternity services accuses Labour of giving low priority to maternity services with no nationwide plan. It says professional groups have been talking past each other and that workforce shortages are chronic.”

Mr Ryall says Labour has produced 55 reports on the workforce crisis that has been unfolding in health, but has failed to heed repeated calls for action.

A DHBNZ survey in the middle of last year pointed to a midwife shortage of around 200 across both the community and hospital sector. Fifteen out of the 21DHBs said they have a shortage of midwives: Bay of Plenty, Canterbury, Hutt Valley, Hawkes Bay, Lakes, MidCentral, Capital & Coast, and Auckland, Waitemata (West), MidCentral (Tararua), Whanganui, Taranaki, Northland, Counties-Manukau and Southland.

“There are areas which have been described as time bombs, such as Counties Manakau which is short 48 midwives, while Capital and Coast DHB last year had to close a whole maternity ward due to staff shortages.”

National MP Katrina Shanks has been alerting the country to these problems for months but Labour has ignored them.

“So it should not surprise Labour if the public react with cynicism to its sudden interest in maternity care,” says Mrs Shanks.

Mr Ryall says National has been rolling out a practical plan to start tackling the health workforce crisis, which includes the voluntary bonding of midwives in hard-to-staff areas.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Back Again: Government Approves TPP11 Mandate

The Government has approved a negotiating mandate for Trans-Pacific Partnership 11 (TPP11), which will ensure New Zealand businesses remain competitive in overseas markets.

Trade Minister Todd McClay says New Zealand will be pushing for the minimal number of changes possible to the original TPP agreement, something that the remaining TPP11 countries have agreed on. More>>




Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice. More>>


Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>


Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>


Treaty: Agreement In Principle Signed With Moriori

“The Crown acknowledges Moriori was left virtually landless from 1870, hindering its cultural, social and economic development. The Crown also acknowledges its contribution to the myths that the people of Moriori were racially inferior and became extinct." More>>


Susan Devoy: Call For Inquiry Into State Abuse Reaches UN

Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy is in Geneva and has asked a United Nations committee to urge the New Zealand government to initiate an inquiry into the physical and sexual abuse of children and disabled people held in state institutions. More>>


(Not National): Cross-Party Agreement On Pike River Re-Entry

The commitment was signed this afternoon by the leaders of Labour, United Future, The Maori Party, and the Green Party and, together with the earlier commitment by New Zealand First, means that there is now a Parliamentary majority behind the families’ fight for truth and justice. More>>






Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election