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

 


DSC demands review of deinstitutionalisation policy

DSC demands review of deinstitutionalisation policy


Continuing mental health-related tragedies on the West Coast yet again highlight the tragic consequences of the mass closure of New Zealand's safe residential facilities for those at risk, according to DSC health spokesman, David Tranter.

When the misleadingly-named "deinstitutionalisation" agenda was being obsessively enforced by administrators whose careers depend on kowtowing to politically-driven agendas which many of them knew to be seriously flawed, it was claimed that the changes were supported by "world-wide"evidence.

When I extracted this evidence after repeated requests to the then Director-General of Health, Karen Poutasi, it consisted of a small number of reports which all focused on the same handful of mental health facilities. One of these reports even came from a company whose expertise is in financial and related fields - again illustrating the fact that one can get anything "proved" if one is prepared to pay for it, Mr. Tranter said.

As for "deinstitutionalisation", the tiny, high-fenced exercise yard at Grey Hospital's mental health unit compares disgracefully with Seaview Psychiatric Hospital's (Hokitika) spacious and peaceful grounds.

It was alleged that "care in the community" would enable people to leave "institutions" and move into the community where appropriate as though this was not already happening - which it certainly was. Further, expert care was promised whereas the reality - as in Greymouth - was that totally untrained people were often appointed as caregivers.

Another deceitful tactic employed in the South Island was a video of happy community house residents which was shown to local councils including the Westland District Council to get their backing for the Seaview closure. The Seaview Hospital Action group which opposed the closure and which I was a member of later discovered that the video was of a very low-dependency Dunedin group and was not typical of the people ejected from safe havens into often risky situations, Mr. Tranter said. Most alarming of all were the Seaview [Psychiatric Hospital words omitted] patient files I saw which showed sudden, unexplained writing down of serious problems and required care levels for patients who were subsequently ejected into inappropriate situations.

This all goes to explain New Zealand's "hideously restricted suicide reporting laws" as described by former Seaview nurse Peter Neame in a recent letter to the Greymouth Star as successive governments and their bureaucratic minions attempt to cover up the tragic consequences of mental health policy.

Mr. Neame, who held senior positions in the Queensland mental health system after leaving the Coast, knows more about mental health issues than the hordes of bureaucrats including DHB ceo David Meates whose recent assurance, "they were using the latest thinking", illustrates the shallow response of DHB management when tragic mental health-related events come to their attention.

It is time for an open and honest review of the effects of closing the safe havens which once served mental health patients so well, Mr. Tranter concluded.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

#Kexit: Prime Minister John Key Announces Resignation

Prime Minister John Key has announced that he’s resigning as Prime Minister in seven days’ time. He made the unexpected announcement at a 12.45 press conference at Parliament, called with less than an hour’s notice.

“It has been an enormous privilege to be Prime Minister of New Zealand, and these last eight years have been an incredible experience. Throughout these years I have given everything I could to this job that I cherish, and this country that I love...“ More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Resignation

The resignation of John Key is one thing. The way that Key and his deputy Bill English have screwed the scrum on the leadership succession vote (due on December 12) is something else again. It remains to be seen whether the party caucus – ie, the ambitious likes of Steven Joyce, Judith Collins, Paula Bennett, and Amy Adams – will simply roll over... More>>

 

Q+A: Labour's Michael Wood Wins Mt Roskill

Labour’s Michael Wood, who last night won a 6,000 vote majority in the Mt Roskill by-election, says the reason for the win was simple, clear messaging... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Anne Tolley’s Callous Folly

Last week’s conflict between Social Development Minister Anne Tolley and District Court judge Carolyn Henwood illustrated quite a few of the flaws in the system. More>>

ALSO:

Members’ Bills: Greens' Domestic Violence And Loans Bills Pulled From Ballot

Jan Logie’s Domestic Violence-Victims' Protection Bill introduces workplace protections for victims of domestic violence, including allowing victims to request paid domestic violence leave for up to 10 days... Gareth Hughes’ Bill allows Kiwis with student loans to defer their student loan repayments into a first home savings scheme. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA: Police Did Not 'Deliberately' Use Pepper Spray On 10-Year-Old

"When spraying the man, the officer did not properly consider the necessity of using pepper spray in a confined space, the likelihood that it would affect the other innocent passengers or the fact that he was using a more powerful spray." More>>

ALSO:

Donor Bill Passes: Full Income Compensation For Live Organ Donors

Unanimous cross-party support for the Compensation for Live Organ Donors Bill represents a critical step in reducing the burgeoning waiting list for kidney donations, according to Kidney Health New Zealand chief executive Max Reid. More>>

ALSO:

Earthquake Response: Emergency Legislation Prepared

Three new Bills have been drafted in the wake of the magnitude 7.8 earthquake on November 14 to ensure the government can enable affected communities to respond quickly and efficiently. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
More RSS  RSS News AlertsNews Alerts
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news