Nick Xenophon’s plan to cut South Australia’s health budget is even more reckless than his absurd pledge to establish a Royal Commission into the health system.
“South Australia’s health system is already reeling from Labor’s savage Transforming Health cuts and changes. What it needs now is a recovery plan, not more cuts as promised by SA Best,” said Shadow Minister for Health Stephen Wade.
“Nick Xenophon needs to explain why he is planning to cut the health budget when South Australians already suffer the nation’s longest Emergency Department waiting times and protracted delays in accessing life-saving elective surgery.
“It seems to have escaped Nick Xenophon’s attention that the Weatherill Labor Government’s decision to close three hospitals and downgrade three emergency departments has produced chaos across our public health system.
“Mr Xenophon needs to explain what parts of the health system he is planning to cut and whether those cuts will be made before or after his Royal Commission hands down its findings.
“There are certainly opportunities to improve the way health care is delivered in South Australia but the SA Best health policy is all symptoms, no cure.
“Rather than cutting the health budget Nick Xenophon should cut his promise to conduct an unnecessary Royal Commission and invest the tens of millions of dollars it would have cost into frontline services and reducing the elective surgery backlog.
“Nick Xenophon’s plans for a Royal Commission into the health system would condemn South Australians to years of waiting before obvious problems in our health system could be tackled.
“By way of contrast a Marshall Liberal Government will hit the ground running with a comprehensive plan to improve South Australia’s ailing health system.
“From wiping out the overdue waiting list for life-saving colonoscopies to reinstating a High Dependency Unit at Modbury Hospital, from establishing a 12-bed acute medical ward at Noarlunga Hospital to addressing the shortage of health practitioners in country areas, the Marshall Liberals have a strong plan for real change.”
- SA Government Media Monitoring Service -
RADIO NEWS & TALKBACK PRECIS
Morning / Lunch Period (9am–1pm)
Thursday 15 February, 2018
RADIO NEWS BROADCASTS
SA BEST Nick Xenophon has flagged the prospect of cuts to health spending to pay for his SA Best party’s election promises after unveiling his regions policy this morning. It includes diverting 30% of mining royalties to regional projects, a $13 million telecommunications fund and a $15 million regional entrepreneurs program. When pressed on how he’d pay for the promises he pointed to the state’s health budget:
(ABC RADIO ADELAIDE 12noon & ABC NORTH & WEST 12noon) “We will get savings through greater efficiencies, particularly in large spending departments, if there’s a significant roadwork that needs to be done we want to make sure it’s done efficiently and well and the health budget at $5.9 billion if you look at the overall expenditure is one of the most significant areas where there are savings.”