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Report Reveals Health Problem

14 December 2004

Report Reveals Health Problem

The Minister of Health’s 148 page report “Implementing the New Zealand Health Strategy 2004” demonstrates perfectly the biggest problem with the health system, says New Zealand First health spokesperson Barbara Stewart.

“The report should be required reading for anyone who wants to know how to turn an essential public service into an industry, spend a fortune in taxpayer dollars and avoid accountability.

“According to the Minister the key development in the health sector since the launch of the Health Strategy is the development of PHOs. This is yet another layer of bureaucracy which is supposed to improve the nation’s health and reduce inequalities but is in fact, creating headaches, especially for rural practices, some of which are currently thousands of dollars out of pocket,” said Mrs Stewart.

“The Health Strategy seems to call for an inordinate number of action plan launches and guideline releases, which no doubt keep a huge number of consultants, providers and pen pushers in employment. Doctors, nurses and patients are at the back of the queue.

“The Minister should make a New Year’s resolution to get back to the basics. Goodness knows there are enough of them: waiting lists, cardiac care inequalities, a shortage of rheumatologists, children with third world diseases and hospices having to fund raise in order to adequately care for the dying are just a few.

“If she runs out there are plenty more where those came from,” said Mrs Stewart.


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