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Competition The Answer To Waiting List Woes

Competition The Answer To Waiting List Woes

Libertarianz Health Spokesman Richard McGrath has advised Health Minister Tony Ryall to heed his own words, and cut hospital emergency departments – and taxpayers - some slack.

"At the Medical Association conference earlier this year I heard Mr Ryall criticising, with good cause, the command and control tactics of the Labour administration," said Dr McGrath.

"However, it appears he now wishes to emulate his power-lusting predecessor, David Cunliffe, who told Parliament he was running the show."

"Our public hospital emergency departments do a great job, under enormous pressure, with limited but highly-skilled staff," added the Masterton GP.

"Edicts about reducing waiting times are unlikely to be viewed favourably by these front-line workers when the system they operate under inherently creates lengthy delays for its customers."

"The same problems have beset all areas of socialised industry: if a commodity or service is not rationed through a pricing mechanism, it will be rationed by other means."

"In the case of public hospital emergency rooms, without user charges there is no direct financial cost attached to the service. Consumer demand has to be dealt with in other ways – and waiting times are the inevitable result."

"If there were a greater number of accident and emergency providers - the likely consequence of a free market in medical services – then people would have more choice."

"Competition between providers, based on the profit motive, would see an end to the spectacle of sick and dying people stuck on gurneys in hospital corridors for days on end."

"Libertarianz applauds the international free trade deals negotiated by the previous government," said Dr McGrath. "Now how about a free trade deal between New Zealanders and the health industry?"

Libertarianz: More Freedom, Less Government


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