Vlahos must go

The State Liberals are demanding Premier Jay Weatherill sacks the Minister for Mental Health Leesa Vlahos after yet another assault of a patient at the Oakden facility was referred to police for investigation.

“Minister Vlahos is clearly incapable of delivering the change necessary to ensure their safety,” said Shadow Minister for Health and Wellbeing Stephen Wade.

“She has failed in her duty to protect patients and ensure the services at Oakden are safe.

“It is a month since Minister Vlahos released the Chief Psychiatrist’s damning report into the treatment of vulnerable patients at Oakden yet still the abuse continues.

“Minister Vlahos clearly does not have the leadership capacity or understanding of her portfolio to drive positive change.

“In last 24 hours we have become aware of two further allegations of assault of patients and the claim that a worker previously accused of assault was still employed at Oakden.

“It is particularly telling that CE of Health Vickie Kaminski twice refused to endorse the embattled Mental Health Minister at a media conference today.

“The job of protecting vulnerable patients at Oakden is beyond the Minister’s limited capacities.”

Six weeks before this alleged assault Minister Vlahos reassured State Parliament:

“… that the Northern Adelaide Local Health Network was taking, and continues to take, immediate steps to ensure that the quality of care at Oakden is of the highest standard and that all residents are safe.” (Hansard 28 March 2017)

“Nothing could be further from the truth," said Mr Wade.

“Minister Vlahos has blamed a culture of cover-up for the appalling treatment of these vulnerable people.

“The truth is this Government ignored repeated warnings from credible sources about conditions at Oakden before belatedly ordering an investigation.”