Health Minister Michael Ferguson has failed to keep his promise to Tasmanians and release the revised master plan for the Royal Hobart Hospital after serious concerns were raised by doctors.
Shadow Health Minister Sarah Lovell said Mr Ferguson had given a firm commitment to release the document by the end of February.
“This is Tasmania’s largest infrastructure project at $698 million and under Michael Ferguson’s watch it has lurched from disaster to disaster,” Ms Lovell said.
“Michael Ferguson needs to explain to Tasmanians and, importantly, to frontline doctors and other medical staff whether he has listened to their very important concerns or whether he intends to go ahead with a design that doesn’t work.
“This is of critical concern to patient safety.
“It was just weeks ago that the Australian Medical Association likened patient transfer from the helipad to the Intensive Care Unit as akin to moving boys out of a cave in Thailand – that was damning and sums up this disaster under Michael Ferguson.
“Tasmanians have seen debacle after debacle under a Minister who is not only hands off, he believes he knows best and ignores the important advice of those at the frontline.
“They also understand Michael Ferguson has form in commissioning important reports into the state of the health and hospital system and then keeping them locked away in his bottom drawer.
“Five years of disasters have included the discovery of widespread mould infestation in building materials, wage theft from 100 workers, local jobs axed in contractual disputes and the on-going and dangerous situation of an overcrowded and under-resourced emergency department.
“Michael Ferguson needs to release the master plan today and reaffirm his guarantee that ‘the first patients will be in the new K Block by the end of 2019’.”
Sarah Lovell MLC
Shadow Health and Preventative Health Care Minister