The regions have been stripped of a say on local health by Labor reversing CLP reforms in 2014 which ensured decision-making isn’t solely driven from Darwin, according to Shadow Minister for Health, Bill Yan (at right).
He says in a media release that creating one mega-department by mid-year shows the Gunner Government doesn’t understand that the Top End and Central Australia are two different regions with different challenges and complexities.
“We will see confusion within the department as well as in the regions and remote communities, increasing red tape. This will further distance health staff from the decision-makers’ critical judgements made at times from afar with possibly little concept of the local people and local pressures.”
Mr Yan says the amalgamation came out of a $581,787 Ernst and Young consultancy which has been marked secret by the Health Minister: “What’s in this report that the government is so desperate to keep out of the public?
“Without it, Territorians can’t evaluate whether this needless amalgamation is hitting its key benchmarks.”
Meanwhile Independent Member for Araluen, Robyn Lambley (at left), says: “The most astounding aspect of this change is the complete lack of consultation with the public [and] limited to ‘internal workshops’ with health staff.
“A full departmental restructure and legislative reform such as this should be implemented in a staged manner over a 12 to 18 month period, with wide and meaningful consultation.
“The Government plans to implement this restructure from July 1.”