What do you think?

Posted March 16, 2015 by Alex Scott

There are a range of government policy initiatives that will impact on you as health workers and on your patients and clients. We are seeking your input into these matters to develop the Together position to guide your delegates in engagement with the government and other political parties and independents around these issues.

Wait time Guarantee
The Queensland government have announced they are scrapping the Wait Time Guarantee and are instead putting in place surgery targets with interim targets applying from 1 April 2015. $30 Million is to be provided to Hospitals to start to address waiting times for outpatient or diagnostic appointments.

Opposition leader Lawrence Springborg has announced he will move in Parliament to block the decision to remove the Wait List Guarantee and also attacked the "health bureaucracy" for influencing the position of the new government. You can also see the Health Minister's responsehere.

Previously the feedback we have received from members  about the Wait Time Guarantee and waiting lists is that the LNP's progress on these surgery lists had been based on "fiddling the books" on who is counted on the lists and at a cost to specialist appointments.

In regional and specialist hospitals like in Cairns and at the Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital members have reported that focus on elective targets has been detrimental to the operation of emergency and intensive care services. In Brisbane the HHS Boards have told us that the Wait Time Guarantee was not going to affect patient care at all because they had already met the targets. The only money spent on the program appears to be government funded ads about the policy that ran just before the state election. 

Let us know what you think by emailing health@together.org.au or calling 1800 177 244.

Contestability
The ALP committed before the election to cease all contestability processes and wrote to independent MP Peter Wellington committing to review the contestability decisions made by the former government. 

Sunshine Coast delegates and I met with Mr Wellington on Friday afternoon to start a conversation about what this review might look like as well as to discuss local issues.

We want to start a conversation in your local health service about how to ensure that the review process ensures that the restoration of the provision of quality health services to all Queenslanders is the primary driver of all contestability review decision and that your expert viewpoints are properly considered. We have proposed further engagement with Mr Wellington and the government with Together delegates about the form of this review process.

A change of government we hope will bring about a change of attitude towards the public service and health workers. It is time to use this new voice for the benefit of your patients and communities by getting involved in the policy discussion. You consistently are the voice for better jobs and services in Health as Together members. Congratulations on the impact you have had so far, now we need the new government to deliver.

Invite your colleagues to be part of the movement for change and improvement that you make happen, ask them to join your union today.

PS: Remember that the new Parliament sits for the first time next week. Make sure and add your name to the call for reinstated job security and a fair pay rise before 24 March.

 


Authorised Alex Scott, Secretary, Together.
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