Record funding for the Mersey Community Hospital is fully locked in and both the Tasmanian and Commonwealth Government are following the formal processes to officially ratify the agreement which was reached in-principle in May.
The Hodgman Liberal Government is the only political party in Tasmania with a clear plan to fix the broken health system, a plan which is backed by an additional $100 million for frontline health and $24 million for patient transport.
It’s clear that there is a small group of politicians in Tasmania who take a perverse satisfaction in trying to scare the Mersey community about the future of the hospital. Last week it was Jacquie Lambie, this week it’s Labor’s Rebecca White.
Their invention of conspiracy theories questioning the future of the hospital is an absolute disgrace. I expect both of them to admit that they got it wrong and apologise to the community for spreading false rumours.
The fact is that the Hodgman Liberal Government has secured a record $148.5 million funding deal for the Mersey. It is a deal which delivers nearly $30 million more than Rebecca White herself said we should ask for.
It is particularly disappointing that Ms White, who promised not to play politics because the White Paper was a continuation of what Labor tried to change at the Mersey hospital, has done a complete u-turn on her position.*
I would love to know how Ms White’s media release last night is consistent with her promise not to play politics. You have to suspect that Bryan Green has given orders that his members are to run any scare campaign they can think up because they are struggling in the polls and have no policies at all.
*Rebecca White, ABC Mornings 29 June 2015: “One of the problems we’ve had in the past of course with health reform progressed under Labor in 2007 is that there was a lot of political interference and, dare I say it, from the Liberal Party, because at that time they very vehemently opposed the changes we were proposing, which are very similar to what this Minister’s now trying to implement with his White Paper. We’re not going to act that way. We want to see good outcomes for Tasmanians. We want to see better health outcomes for those people who are waiting on these elective surgery waiting lists. We’re not going to play politics with this.
Michael Ferguson, Minister for Health