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Disability Advocates reject Minister's claims that TQEH will be better

Disability advocates today rejected Health Minister Snelling’s claim that the Government’s plans for rehabilitation services at the QEH are better than what they are currently receiving at Hampstead.

In responding to a talkback radio caller’s query of “How can Hampstead rehab as it is now fit into the QEH to give equal or better rehab services”, the Health Minister stated: “of course it’s going to be better”.

In response, Paraquad SA (PQSA) President, Craig Clarke, today presented Dignity for Disability MLC Kelly Vincent and Liberal Shadow Health Minister Stephen Wade with a 15 point summary of issues which must be addressed before the QEH will be equal to rehabilitation services at Hampstead – not even better.

Mr Clarke said “PQSA is asking that the plan to migrate the services provided at Hampstead Rehabilitation Centre for people with spinal injuries, and also those with brain injuries be urgently reconsidered – and reconsidered with complete consultation. SA Health and the Weatherill Government are fond of the ‘equivalent or better’ rhetoric – PQSA simply seeks precise assurances that equivalent services are guaranteed.”

Dignity for Disability MLC Kelly Vincent said “The failure to fully engage people with disability in designing the new services is a shocking oversight. The Government must fix this project now. If they can’t improve on existing services they should leave them as they are.”

Liberal Shadow Minister for Health, Stephen Wade, said that “it is ludicrous for the Government to claim that they can close 28 beds at the QEH, cram in a major slab of Hampstead’s caseload on top of current services without damaging services, both those at Hampstead and those at the QEH”.

Joint media release by Craig Clarke (ParaQuad SA), Hon Kelly Vincent MLC (Dignity for Disability) and Stephen Wade (Liberal Shadow Minister for Health).