Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

Pre-Budget Announcement At Wellington Regional Hospital

Prime Minister Pre-Budget Announcement At Wellington Regional Hospital with Health Minister Tony Ryall

Scoop Audio + Video + Photos

By Mark P. Williams


Today the Prime Minister gave a pre-budget announcement at Wellington Regional Hospital; he was accompanied by Health Minister Tony Ryall.
He announced a number of new initiatives which came to an investment of $101m over four years which will be largely funded by an increase in prescription charges and other savings within the health sector.

Under the changes, prescription charges would increase from $3 to $5 for the first 20 prescriptions per year; after that they would be free. The Prime Minister emphasised that the level of prescription charges in New Zealand remained one of the lowest among comparable nations; lower than both the United Kingdom and Australia.

The Health Minister spoke of investments in surgery and cancer diagnosis and treatment. The Minister said that the government had increased elective surgery operations by 27,000 extra operations over the last five years and intended to increase this further. He said that he intended to increase availability of cancer treatment including investment in dedicated nurses who would act as first points of contact and case coordinators for cancer patients.

The Minister emphasised that the increase in prescription costs was limited to the first twenty items only, adding that no family need pay more than $40 per year for prescriptions.

************

Scoop Audio

Click a link to play audio (or right-click to download) in either
MP3 format or in OGG format.

Questions on Health

The PM was asked what allowances would be made for beneficiaries; he stated that this was the first increase in
The PM was asked how much of the spending on health would be coming from cuts in other departments and other areas
The PM and Health Minister were asked about the legal implications on recent legal judgments on payments for family members acting as carers for disabled or aged relatives
The Minister was asked if the increased prescription charges constituted a cut to frontline medical services—both the minister and PM emphatically rejected this

General Questions

The PM was asked questions about similar changes to education and other areas
The PM was asked about whether he would support gay marriage; he said that it was not his number one issue and reiterated that he considered economic issues to be larger priorities but indicated that he was not personally opposed to gay marriage.
The PM was asked why he was making changes to labour laws; he said that it was the fulfilment of policies the National Party had campaigned on: including allowing partial reductions for partial strikes, and removing the 30 day rule that forces non-union members to take union terms and conditions—the only new change was in the period of time allowed for unions or employers to initiate collective bargaining.
The PM was then asked whether he felt it was likely that New Zealand would be going into recession, he said that nothing he had seen indicated that this was the case

************

************


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Reese Erlich: Foreign Correspondent: Trump Plays Both Sides Against The Middle

Is he a hawk? Is he a peacenik? The President keeps us guessing . By Reese Erlich President Donald Trump has convinced Republican isolationists and hawks that he supports their views. That’s a neat trick, since the two groups hold opposing positions. ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Waiting For The Old Bailey: Julian Assange And Britain’s Judicial Establishment

On September 7, Julian Assange will be facing another round of gruelling extradition proceedings, in the Old Bailey, part of a process that has become a form of gradual state-sanctioned torture. The US Department of Justice hungers for their man. The More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The Sorry Plight Of The International Education Sector

Tourism and international education have been two of the sectors hardest hit by the pandemic. They’re both key export industries. Yet the government response to them has been strikingly different. There has been nothing beyond a few words of ministerial condolence and a $51.6 million package (details below) to get the sector through the pandemic...
More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Google’s Open Letter: Fighting Australia’s News Media Bargaining Code

Tech giants tend to cast thin veils over threats regarding government regulations. They are also particularly concerned by those more public spirited ones, the sort supposedly made for the broader interest. Google has given us an example of this ... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Trump’s Current Chances Of Re-Election

By now it seems clear that National have no fresh ideas to offer for how New Zealand could avoid the Covid-19 economic crisis. As in the past, National has set an arbitrary 30% ratio of government debt to GDP that it aims to achieve “in a decade or so,” ... More>>

The Conversation: Rogue Poll Or Not, All The Signs Point To A Tectonic Shift In New Zealand Politics

Richard Shaw AAP(various)/NZ Greens (CC-BY-SA)/The Conversation Strong team. More jobs. Better economy. So say the National Party’s campaign hoardings. Only thing is, last Sunday’s Newshub-Reid Research poll – which had support for the Labour ... More>>

The Coronavirus Republic: Three Million Infections And Rising

The United States is famed for doing things, not to scale, but off it. Size is the be-all and end-all, and the coronavirus is now doing its bit to assure that the country remains unrivalled in the charts of infection . In time, other unfortunates may well ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Altars Of Hypocrisy: George Floyd, Protest And Black Face

Be wary what you protest about. The modern moral constabulary are out, and they are assisted by their Silicon Valley friends in the Social Media club. Should you dare take a stand on anything, especially in a dramatic way, you will be found out ... More>>