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

Rebuilding: Silvia Cartwright To Lead Inquiry Into EQC

“The inquiry will be the first of its kind under the Public Inquiries Act 2013 and will have all the powers of a Royal Commission, be independent of Government and make its report directly to the Governor-General.

“The aim of the inquiry is to learn from the experience of the Canterbury earthquakes and ensure that the Earthquake Commission is fit for purpose in future events.

“The insurance system as a whole, including EQC’s role in that system, needs to be ready to deliver services to those affected by the next big event – whenever or wherever that happens." More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On The Royal Commission Into Child Abuse

Obviously, it is good news that the coalition government has broadened the scope of its Royal Commission into the abuse of children, beyond its previous focus on children in state care. More>>

ALSO:

Cases Delayed: Court Staff Refuse To Handle Sentencing Papers

Dozens of court cases have reportedly been delayed, as court staff escalate industrial action at two Auckland courts by enforcing a ban on handling sentencing papers. More>>

ALSO:

Education: Primary Teachers Rolling Strikes

RNZ Report: More than 100,000 primary school students in Auckland will be home from school today as teachers and principals walk off the job for the second time this year. It's the start of a week of rolling one-day strikes around the country, after the collapse of contract negotiations last Thursday. More>>

ALSO:

"Process Was Sound": Inquiry Into Haumaha Appointment Released

The Inquiry’s purpose was to examine, identify, and report on the adequacy of the process that led to the appointment. It found the process was sound and no available relevant information was omitted. More>>

ALSO:

Govt Loses In Supreme Court: Call For Debate On Prisoners' Right To Vote

The court earlier this week upheld a High Court decision which found that a law restricting a prisoner's right to vote was inconsistent with the Bill of Rights. More>>

ALSO:

Shenanigans: NZ First Accepts Jami-Lee Ross Proxy Vote

The New Zealand First caucus strongly believes that in terms of the Electoral Integrity Amendment Act, that someone in Mr Ross’ position should resign his seat... the New Zealand First Whip will use Mr Ross’ proxy–to be exercised at all times in support of the vote of the National Party... More>>

ALSO:

Call For Conversation: Do You Know What Data Is Being Collected About You?

New Zealand Maori Council has called on a national conversation when it comes to data sovereignty asking the question “just how many people know what data is being collected, why and how is it being used?” More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels