Health Restructuring Takes Blow From Own Ranks

Published: Wed 18 Oct 2000 02:36 PM
Health Restructuring Takes Blow From Inside Government Ranks
The Government has today come under attack for its health reforms – this time from its own side – with the Alliance and a Labour MP opposing major parts of the restructuring, National Health spokesperson Wyatt Creech said today.
“The Health Select Committee has had the most extraordinary experience - hearing evidence against the reforms from the Alliance and Labour MP John Tamihere.
“The Alliance has concerns – which are shared by National - about the potential extra costs, the increased bureaucracy and the fragmentation as a result of the health restructuring. It wants the reforms slowed down.
“The Alliance warns of duplication of bureaucracy and escalating costs as a result of the District Health Boards. It is also worried about funding disparities between regions, and under-funding of public health and prevention programmes as a result of the new structure.
“It also warns that the structure diffuses the democratic intention of the Government reforms.
“But the Alliance is Government!
“And then there are Labour MP John Tamihere’s concerns. He’s made it clear today there’s a stoush going on within Labour over the Bill’s definition of Maori.
“John Tamihere has provided strongly worded evidence to the select committee against the use of the term mana whenua as representing the interests of Maori.
“The restructuring has been poorly thought through. But having the Government admitting this is extraordinary. This evidence is highly embarrassing and destructive to this massive restructuring.”

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