Politics should be set aside to tackle health crisis

Tasmanian Labor
  • Appeal to
    Peter Gutwein for bipartisanship on health
  • Too many
    people have been left behind by the Liberals
  • Budget
    unsustainable, propped up by structural underfunding of essential services
  • Labor Leader Rebecca White
    has written to Tasmania’s new Premier Peter Gutwein, seeking a bipartisan
    approach to tackling the state’s health crisis.

    Ms White said the health of
    Tasmanians should be above politics.

    “Labor welcomes Peter
    Gutwein’s commitment that his government will do more to fix the crisis in
    health, and his admission that too many Tasmanians have been left behind.

    “We see daily the impact of
    chronic underinvestment in the health and hospital system. Elective surgery
    waiting lists are at a record high of nearly 11,000 people, and ambulance
    ramping at our hospitals is increasing.

    “The Launceston General
    Hospital is at its highest escalation level more than 70 per cent of the time,
    and its emergency department is the worst performing in the country for patient
    access block.

    “This has been occurring
    under the nose of the new Premier in his electorate of Bass. It’s time he took
    action. As Premier he must commit to providing the resources the LGH needs to
    function effectively.”

    Ms White said the change of
    Premier provides an opportunity for a change of course.

    “Budget cuts have eroded the
    public services that Tasmanians rely on, which in turn has created growing
    inequality in our community. Peter Gutwein has acknowledged this and committed
    to ‘do more’.

    “Labor calls on the Premier to
    reverse the $450 million in budget cuts that threaten to erode already
    stretched public services, including health.

    “We stand ready to work with
    the government to find ways to resolve the crisis in health.

    “The structural underfunding of health must
    stop. Peter Gutwein knows from independent analysis conducted by KPMG that
    there is a structural deficit in the health budget of around $100 million every

    “The Budget is not sustainable when it is underpinned by structural underfunding of essential services.”

    Rebecca White

    Labor Leader

    /Public Release. View in full here.