Cut price palliative care

The State Liberals have released a document showing that less than a month ago the Weatherill Government was planning to spend $10 million on the establishment of a palliative care facility at Noarlunga Hospital - $3 million more than was committed to the Flinders Medical Centre option unveiled yesterday.

The 2015 Transforming Health Capital Planning power point delivered by the Group Director of Infrastructure Brendan Hewitt on the 3rd of August includes $10 million for the establishment of a palliative care service at Noarlunga Hospital.

“This last minute change of tack on where to locate the palliative care facility and how much it will cost illustrates the chaotic nature of the Weatherill Government’s plans to slash health expenditure,” said Shadow Minister for Health Stephen Wade.

“This announcement comes just a month after the Weatherill Government announced a new PSTD Centre at Glenside for $15 million when in recent years cost estimates for the project where between $17 million and $25 million.

“The Weatherill Government is cutting corners on health expenditure to reign in its budget deficit and it’s hospital patients who will suffer the consequences.

“Having foolishly committed to closing down the Repat the Weatherill Government is now thrashing around searching for an acceptable alternative for the provision of palliative care to the people of southern Adelaide.

“The simple fact is that the current Daw Park Hospice at the Repat is the best site for providing palliative care to the people of southern Adelaide.

“The Daw Park Hospice provides high quality palliative care in a park setting that simply can’t be replicated at Flinders Medical Centre.

“Had the $166 million the Weatherill Government is now forced to spend at FMC been invested at the Repat it could have been transformed into a world class facility with increased capacity.

“The Weatherill Government’s decision to close the Repat will reduce the capacity in Adelaide’s hospital system at the very moment demand is increasing.

“Demand for palliative care services will increase sharply as South Australia’s population continues to age yet the Weatherill Government is spending $7 million without creating a single additional bed.”