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Local home support agency gets short shrift from Government

David
CLARK
MP for Dunedin North
Clare
CURRAN
MP for Dunedin South

18 December 2012 MEDIA STATEMENT
Local home support agency gets short shrift from Government

‘Tis the week before Christmas and while nothing is stirring - not even a mouse - local Labour MPs say they smell a rat in the awarding of a DHB contract to an Australian agency.

Dunedin MPs David Clark and Clare Curran believe the Government’s internationalist ideology is behind the dumping of Presbyterian Support Otago as a provider of home support to the Southern District Health Board.

“Presbyterian Support has run the home support services contract for 13 years, providing professional, local, and stable services for vulnerable clients,” Dr Clark said.

“It is hard to see what they have been doing wrong, given they are the largest provider locally and have demonstrated an ability to expand as required.

“The move has Tony Ryall’s fingerprints all over it. As Minister of Health, he has consistently favoured corporate solutions over local care.

“The process appears to have been a sham. The tender criteria were vague, plus there was critical information omitted. Just as shocking is that price was signalled as of low importance to the tender.”

Dunedin South MP Clare Curran said that a company with its roots outside of Dunedin - and more so the country - will struggle to provide the caring and loving local support network that PSO, the region’s largest home-care provider, has.

“The decision means an uncertain future for around 600 staff and 2000 clients.

“And while the human cost of this is tragic, there are also financial implications. Overseas companies with a strong profit motive taking over local service provision will have a detrimental effect on both elder-care and the Dunedin economy,” she said.

ENDS

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