New South Wales health minister Brad Hazzard has announced that Wyong Hospital will remain in public hands, in a reversal of the state government's plan to move towards a public-private partnership.
The announcement follows 10 months of campaigning from the state nursing union, advocates, community members and local health workers.
General Secretary of the NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association (NSWNMA) said the result is a win for public health in the state.
— ANMF (@anmfbetterhands) July 5, 2017
“The previous Health Minister made a serious error in judgement when she announced last September that Wyong Hospital would be redeveloped under a public-private partnership without consulting staff, community members or health unions," Holmes said. “Today’s decision by the Berejiklian Government to walk away from plans to privatise Wyong Hospital is a step in the right direction.”
— Brad Hazzard (@BradHazzard) July 5, 2017
Holmes said after allocating $10 million in last month’s budget to the hospital’s redevelopment, the state government must now fast track the remaining $190 million to ensure the upgrades are delivered on time.
The union said it will continue to campaign to all political parties against the privatisation of the public hospitals that the NSW government has in its sights.
NSWNMA said it's imperative the Berejiklian government makes the right public health policy decision and scraps plans to privatise Bowral Hospital, Shellharbour Hospital and the new Maitland Hospital at Metford.
The union's key concerns surrounding public-private partnerships include cost, accountability, safe patient care and that more taxpayers’ dollars are being directed towards private shareholders.
Holmes added the union wants to ensure that people are well-informed and aware that it is possible to retain their public hospitals in public ownership.Do you have an idea for a story?
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