Parliament

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

 

Cost of after-hours medical care too much for many Kiwis

Cost of after-hours medical care still too much for many Kiwis

The announcement of a new model for after-hours medical services in Auckland will address some issues for those in the city but it still leaves inconsistencies in accessibility and affordability, says Labour's Health spokesperson Grant Robertson.

"The cost of getting after-hours medical treatment has become increasingly out of reach for many New Zealanders.

"Today's announcement will reduce some of that cost for some people in Auckland. But it will leave other families in the city on moderate incomes facing charges of around $100 for an after-hours consultation. That is simply unaffordable for many who are struggling to keep up with the rising cost of living. Those people will still either head to already full emergency departments or worse will not seek treatment.

"As for the rest of the country, they will be rightly asking, what about us?

"Costs for after-hours services are extremely high in cities and regions outside of Auckland, including for children and elderly. The Government has not taken any action to address this. Rather it has left DHBs with budgets that have not kept up with the increased costs they are facing.

"Earlier this year, the Public Health Advisory Committee of the Waitemata DHB expressed concern that the funding for the Auckland project would not be sufficient to provide the range of services needed.

"It is not clear from today's announcement if this issue has been resolved. Also the Government has not provided additional funding to the DHBs involved which means the money will have to be taken from elsewhere. The DHBs need to be upfront about which other services will lose funding as a result."

The proposal also appears to continue inconsistencies in the level of service and cost in different parts of Auckland, said Grant Robertson.

"For example, while the presence of four 24 hour clinics is good, there will not be a 24 hour clinic in South Auckland - an area that would seem to be one of the most likely to need such a service. And while it is good that some of the clinics will see under six year olds for free after-hours, others will not. That will cause confusion and inequities.

"After a number of delays, it is good that this initiative has finally been agreed, and that some Aucklanders will be able to access services at a lower cost. But for many Kiwis, the high cost of after-hours care will continue to be a problem.

"Labour will release its health policy in the coming months. We believe that the issue of accessible and affordable after-hours care is one that faces the whole country. It needs a solution that will ensure families can get care easily, at a price they can afford, wherever they live in New Zealand," said Grant Robertson.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On National’s Rampant Pandering To The Farming Vote

What on earth has happened to the political parties n the centre-right? Once upon a time in the US, the party of Lincoln was a respectable political party before it devolved into the cult of Trump. Here at home, the National Parry used to be able to manage and administer the economic orthodoxy in a reasonably competent fashion. Now it can barely do simple addition and subtraction. Something must have gotten into the water, and not simply out on the farm... 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>>

ALSO:

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>>

ALSO:

Shaw: Wealth Tax Not A Bottom Line For Green Party But They Will Push For It

Green Party co-leader James Shaw says one of his senior MPs misspoke under pressure when she said a wealth tax was one of the party's bottom lines. More>>

ALSO:

Government: More Border Exceptions For Critical Roles

The Government has established class exceptions for border entry for a limited number of veterinarians, deep sea fishing crew, as well as agricultural and horticultural machinery operators. “Tight border restrictions remain the backbone of the Government’s ... More>>

ALSO:


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>>

ALSO:

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 vote.nz . 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>>

ALSO:

NZ First: Party List

New Zealand First has a proven twenty-seven-year history of bringing balance and common sense to our government. Amid the continued setbacks of COVID-19 restrictions, New Zealand First has once again sustained its profile by selecting a strong team ... More>>


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 


 

InfoPages News Channels