Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Rigid approach to saving money in hospitals poses risks

Rigid approach to saving money in public hospitals poses risks; senior doctors raise critical questions that need to be answered


“Concerns about the one-size-fits-all approach being taken to national procurement for public hospitals should be a wake-up call for the Government,” said Mr Ian Powell, Executive Director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists, today. Mr Powell was responding to the concerns expressed publicly by Canterbury hospital specialists yesterday.

Canterbury’s senior doctors fear the Canterbury District Health Board (CDHB) will lose millions of dollars a year, jobs will go and patients will suffer under the cost-cutting measures being driven by the government’s agency, Health Benefits Limited (HBL).

HBL is rolling out programmes to save money in DHBs through finance, procurement and supply chains, and food, linen and laundry services – but senior doctors have raised serious concern that HBL’s methods of applying the changes will actually leave patients and health services worse off.

“The Government needs to listen to these concerns because they are not being raised lightly,” says Mr Powell. “Senior doctors and other health professionals are dealing directly with patients and understand the potential impact of the HBL changes on health services.”

“The current approach is too rigid and there is a real risk it will end up killing off existing local or regional initiatives which have proved effective in the interests of overall cost-savings. That means some high performing DHBs may end up penalised, in effect, while lower-performing DHBs stand to benefit from national savings, which would be an absurd situation.”

Mr Powell says public hospital specialists are already under pressure to save money, meet national health targets and shoulder greater workloads so it is imperative that any HBL savings are not at the expense of providing good quality health care.

“The Government needs to take a closer look at its national procurement programme to make sure it is not going to undermine health services or those DHBs which are performing better than others.”

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Arming Police: Frontline Police To Routinely Carry Tasers

"In making the decision, the Police executive has considered almost five years worth of 'use of force' data… It consistently shows that the Taser is one of the least injury-causing tactical options available when compared with other options, with a subject injury rate of just over one per cent for all deployments." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On D-Day For Dairy At The TPP

While New Zealand may feel flattered at being called “the Saudi Arabia of milk” it would be more accurate to regard us as the suicide bombers of free trade. More>>

ALSO:

Leaked Letter: Severe Restrictions on State Owned Enterprises

Even an SOE that exists to fulfil a public function neglected by the market or which is a natural monopoly would nevertheless be forced to act "on the basis of commercial considerations" and would be prohibited from discriminating in favour of local businesses in purchases and sales. Foreign companies would be given standing to sue SOEs in domestic courts for perceived departures from the strictures of the TPP... More>>

ALSO:

"Gutted" Safety Bill: Time To Listen To Workplace Victims’ Families

Labour has listened to the families of whose loved ones have been killed at work and calls on other political parties to back its proposals to make workplaces safer and prevent unnecessary deaths on the job. More>>

ALSO:

Regulators: Govt To ‘Crowd-Source’ Regulatory Advice

A wide-ranging set of reforms is to be implemented to shake up the way New Zealand government agencies develop, write and implement regulations. More>>

ALSO:

Board Appointments: Some Minister Appoint Less The 3 In 10 Women

“It’s 2015 not 1915: Ministers who appoint less than 3 in 10 women to their boards must do better, they have no excuse but to do better,” said Dr Blue. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The 1990s Retro Proposals For Our Health System

As we learned yesterday, the reviews propose that the democratically elected representation on DHBs should be reduced, such that community wishes will be able to be over-ridden by political appointees. In today’s revelations, the reviews also propose a return to the destructive competitive health model of the 1990s. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news