Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Saccharine Sweetener For Elderly Patients

Saccharine Sweetener For Elderly Patients

ACT New Zealand Health Spokesman Heather Roy today labelled Health Minister Annette King's announcement yesterday - to fast-track health cost changes for over 65 year-olds - nothing more than an election sweetener.

"On July 1 2004, all patients aged over 65 and enrolled in Primary Health Organisations will receive cheaper primary healthcare, and pay a maximum fee of $3 per prescription item. Originally scheduled for implementation in 2005/06, this will now be up and running at election time," Mrs Roy said.

"Yet, in the last Budget, the Minister promised that everyone enrolled in access PHOs, and all under 18 year-olds enrolled in any PHO, would receive this maximum $3 charge by October 1. Yesterday, Ms King reneged on that promise, delaying it until 2004.

"This is completely unacceptable - the Minister made a promise, and is now backing down in order to secure votes for the next election. While appealing to those who are more likely to vote for her, Ms King is forcing our poorest patients to wait another six months for savings they were promised in October.

"By fast-tracking this initiative, the Minister is trying to entice the over-65 vote. She originally promised cheaper healthcare to the elderly in 2002/03. This was subsequently delayed until 2005/06 - but has now been moved forward a year, to the other side of the election.

"While Ms King is pretending to care about New Zealanders' health needs, this juggling act clearly shows she actually is more committed to buying votes for the next election, than providing consistent healthcare to those who truly need it.

"The Minister is putting her vote-buying needs before the health needs of New Zealand patients. Access PHO patients and those under 18 have health needs as well. The only reason they have been sidelined is because they are either too young, or not inclined, to vote Labour," Mrs Roy said.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Whether This Election Is Already A Foregone Conclusion

Currently, this election looks like being a no contest. The weekend’s Newshub poll has the centre left enjoying a roughly 57-36% lead over the centre right. Labour is on 50.1% and the Greens 6.5%, while National remains in the dreaded 20s at 29.6% and the Act Party is on 6.3%. Conditions continue to look terminal for New Zealand First. Despite being a stubborn brake on government tax policy and winning a few policy gains of its own, NZF is registering only a 1.9% level of support... More>>


Economy: Business Leaders’ Confidence Tanks As Top Kiwi CEOs Vent Their Frustrations

The New Zealand Herald’s Mood of the Boardroom 2020 Election Survey has been released with top business leaders saying New Zealand’s Covid-19 recovery is in peril – and they want a decisive role with Government in the country’s future. The annual ... More>>


Poll: Newshub-Reid Research Poll Shows National Rising But Labour Still Governing Alone

With less than three weeks to go, Labour remains in a position where it could govern alone in the latest Newshub-Reid Research poll* on 50.1% - down 10.8 percentage points. National has risen slightly to 29.6% (up 4.5 percentage points), but even with the ... More>>


Winston Peters Speech: The Gathering Storm Clouds: Ihumatao

Frequently around New Zealand you hear people say that politicians are all the same. It’s a convenient way to dismiss any careful investigation of the truth of that statement. New Zealand First since its inception has been committed to ‘one law ... More>>


National Agriculture Policy: Will Restore Farmer Confidence And Pride

A National Government will reduce regulatory burden and give farmers confidence for the future. Leader of the National Party Judith Collins and Agriculture spokesperson David Bennett announced National’s Agriculture policy in Gisborne today. “Agriculture ... More>>


Government: Taking Action To Reduce Waste And Plastics

Phase out single use and hard to recycle plastics by 2025 Create a $50m Plastics Innovation Fund to develop alternatives Standardise kerbside recycling The Labour Party is taking the next step in removing plastic rubbish from our oceans and environment ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Last Night’s Leaders Debate

Do political debates change voter intentions, and cause voters to switch sides? According to a 2019 Harvard Business School study conducted across 61 elections in nine countries involving 172,000 respondents, the answer would seem to be a resounding ... More>>


Dunne Speaks: The Election Campaign Just Grinds Slowly On And On

With just over three weeks until the General Election, the release of the first major pre-election opinion poll this week confirmed what was already being reported about this year’s campaign. Although the gap between Labour and National has narrowed ... More>>

Electoral Commission: Candidate And Party Lists Released

17 registered political parties and 677 candidates will be contesting the 2020 General Election Nominations have now closed and the Electoral Commission has released the electorate and party list candidates for 2020 online at . Advance voting ... More>>

National: Plan To Restore NZ’s Prosperity

National’s Economic and Fiscal Plan carefully balances the need to invest in infrastructure and core public services while also reducing tax pressure on Kiwi families and businesses. National Leader Judith Collins and Finance spokesperson Paul Goldsmith unveiled National’s ... More>>






InfoPages News Channels