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Transforming Health by budget cuts

Today’s Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) report into elective surgery in South Australia’s public hospital system has laid bare the real agenda of the Weatherill Government’s controversial Transforming Health program.

“South Australia has had five years of cuts to elective surgery in our public hospital system but despite the number of people receiving elective surgery declining the amount of time they are waiting has increased,” said Shadow Minister for Health Stephen Wade.

“In the last five years the number of admissions for elective surgery in South Australia has fallen by 4.3 per cent whilst the number of days waiting has increased for 34 to 40.

“That is the worst decline in the country.

“South Australia is the only State in the country that is undertaking fewer elective surgery procedures over the past five years.

“South Australia is the only State in the country where the number of people receiving elective surgery has fallen each and every year for the past five years.

“Despite South Australia going backwards during the last five years the Weatherill Government is planning even deeper cuts to hospital services under the guise of Transforming Health.

“There has been no fall in the level of demand for elective surgery in South Australia in the last five years, rather there have been government budget cuts to the hospital system.

“Despite the cuts to elective surgery in the last five years Health Minister Jack Snelling is planning to have even less beds and fewer nurses and doctors in South Australian hospitals under Transforming Health.

“Fewer doctor and nurses will result in less elective surgery as the Minister desperately searches for budget savings to fund the new Royal Adelaide Hospital.

“The Minister is planning to close the Repat which is a centre of elective urology and orthopaedic surgery in South Australia.

“Transforming Health is a lie designed to cover-up a sustained cuts to the level care provided in South Australian hospitals.”