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

 


Paying patients to go away not a solution

David Clark
MP for Dunedin North

18 July 2014

Paying patients to go away not a solution

A voucher system being used by emergency departments in Southern DHB - which pays patients to see a GP – is designed to skew figures to meet Government targets, Dunedin North MP David Clark says.

It follows reports of Counties Manukau police recoding some 700 burglaries, so they were not recorded in crime statistics.

“Southern DHB patients who can afford to visit their doctor before presenting at the emergency department are promised a fast track through the ED process. Those who go straight to the ED because they can’t afford to visit their GP will now get sent off to their doctor with a voucher for a free visit. Effectively they’re paid to go away.

“I understand that they will only get a voucher on presentation of their community services card. There are plenty of people without a card who are financially stretched. Nurses are trained to assess health issues not financial status.

“This perverse approach is yet another band aid. The problem wouldn’t exist if health care was properly funded.

“Southern DHB currently ranks second-to-bottom against three of the government’s health targets (including ED waiting time), yet the DHB’s primary focus continues to be cost-cutting. Services have been cut to the bone. How does any of this reflect a DHB committed to the provision of good, quality health care?

“DHB staff continue to do an admirable job under increasingly trying circumstances, yet one of two senior executives at the DHB taken off regular duties has been asked to focus on savings in the area of quality.

“Cutting quality is the answer to a question that shouldn’t need to be asked. At a time when the Southern DHB is lagging behind virtually every other DHB in so many areas, surely it should be looking to invest in quality, rather than targeting that area for potential cost-savings. All of this is a response to this government’s chronic underfunding of health in the south.

“The DHB’s deficit is now expected to rise from an initial $9 million projected shortfall to just shy of $14 million. Labour has already committed to reviewing the population-based funding formula, if elected, to ensure that the likes of Southern DHB – geographically the largest in the country – is getting its fair share of the national health budget,” David Clark says.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Anzac Day:


Reshuffle: PM Announces Changes To Ministerial Portfolios

Prime Minister Bill English today announced the appointment of Gerry Brownlee as Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nathan Guy as Minister of Civil Defence, Nikki Kaye as Minister of Education and Mark Mitchell as Minister of Defence.

The changes follow the resignations from Cabinet of Hekia Parata and Murray McCully.

In other changes Simon Bridges has been appointed Leader of the House and Nicky Wagner has been made Minister supporting Greater Christchurch Regeneration. More>>

 

Q+A Transcript: CTU Call For 'National Standards' On Wages

‘If you look at countries who do better than us, who pay wages better, who have more competitive industries, more successful economies, they have systems where there are national standards.’ More>>

ALSO:

Health Workers Respond: People's Mental Health Report Released

The People's Mental Health Review reinforces a recent YesWeCare.nz survey of 6,000 health workers, which found nine in 10 believe they don't have the staff or resources to deliver the care Kiwis need when they need it. More>>

ALSO:

More Mental Health:

Energy: Greens Launch Plan For Cheaper And Cleaner Electricity

$112 million for winter warm-up payments to help low-income households cover their power bills • setting a goal for 100 percent renewable electricity by 2030 (in average hydrological conditions) • an investigation into the electricity wholesale market. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Aged-Care Settlement

Until yesterday, a National government has always been the sworn enemy of women seeking justice in the workplace, in the face of gender-based pay discrimination. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news