National Health Services Funding - New Approach
WEDNESDAY 19 JUNE 2002
“New Approach Over Funding Of National Health Services Required”
“A new approach for making decisions over the funding of national health services is required,” said Mr Ian Powell, Executive Director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists, today. Mr Powell was responding to the debate over the plan of the Auckland District Health Board to merge the child and adult sleep and respiratory laboratories despite strong criticisms from senior doctors and the Paediatric Society.
“In this case one district health board (Auckland) under pressure because of its own internal financial problems has made a decision that affects the quality and standards of a national service. It raises serious implications for other national health services. These decisions should not be left to one board to make. They are often made by managers in response to short-term pressures but without regard to the longer term effects.”
“These decisions are made by managers influenced by local pressures rather than national needs. These managers lack the level of understanding of the importance of quality and standards as senior doctors and other health professionals. In some cases these managers also do not have the same commitment to standards of quality care.”
“The government should seriously consider a new decision-making process for funding national health services that includes senior doctors and other relevant health professionals and is required to take into account national as well as local needs,” concluded Mr Powell.