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Minister tricky on DHB finances

1 August 2019

Minister tricky on DHB finances

David Clark has claimed he cannot provide information on the financial performance of DHBs despite having the data since June, National’s Health spokesperson Michael Woodhouse says.

“When asked for information about DHBs’ finances for the month of April, Dr Clark said he was unable to respond.

“However, when asked about the advice he received in June, the Minister revealed he received a report on DHB financial performance in the ten months to the end of April on 21 June.

“The Minister has held the information on DHBs’ financial performance for almost six weeks, and is refusing to release it.

“If Dr Clark knows how DHBs are doing financially, he should tell us. He’s not being open or transparent.

“The combined deficit of all 20 DHBs looks set to balloon to around $500 million this year in spite of the Minister’s pledge to bring it under control. But we’ve been left in the dark.

“It’s now August and there’s been no update on DHBs’ finances since March.

“New Zealanders are suffering with increased wait times and falling standards of care. Meanwhile, the Minister has stopped publishing health targets, stating that giving Kiwis updates on the efficacy of the public health service created “perverse incentives”.

“It’s disappointing to see this from a Government that said it would be the ‘most open and transparent ever’. The public deserves to know what’s going on.”

Note to editors: Copies of the written questions and responses are attached

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