The Minister for Health has confirmed she has been shut out of negotiations on hospital funding, after her attack on Labor’s hospital funding policy was directly repudiated by the Prime Minister.
SUSSAN LEY: I’m not going to be in the room, I don’t have a crystal ball and I think it’s fair that all of the parties in the negotiation which is of course the Prime Minister and the Premiers have a discussion and –
LANDERS: Do you know the amount?
LEY: No I don’t.
ABC AM, 30 MARCH 2016
In her first months in the job, the minister defended her Government’s decisions to rip $57 billion out of public hospitals by trashing Labor’s historic hospital funding reforms.
In Question Time on 18 March 2015 the minister claimed Activity Based Funding and the National Efficient Price, agreed by the Commonwealth and all states and territories, Liberal and Labor “fund inefficiency and waste.”
At Senate Estimates earlier this month the minister’s own departmental boss made clear what he thought of this argument.
“National Efficient Price is a very good mechanism.”.
MARTIN BOWLES, ESTIMATES, 3 MARCH 2016
Now, the Prime Minister has humiliated his minister, shutting her out of the hospital funding negotiations and backing Labor’s Activity Based Funding and the National Efficient Price.
Unfortunately, as is so often the case when it comes to health, Malcolm Turnbull is all talk and no action.
The reported compromise deals would still leave states billions of dollars worse off confirming Malcolm Turnbull doesn’t care about patients, he only cares about his re-election.
Malcolm Turnbull’s short term fix to get him through the election shows he doesn’t care about what’s been happening to our patients waiting in emergency departments, he doesn’t care about patients languishing in waiting lists for elective surgery and he doesn’t care about our doctors and nurses trying to do the best they can with less resources.
After being hung out to dry by her Prime Minister with his for Labor’s landmark hospital reforms, the Minister for Health should now break her silence and properly fund our public hospitals.