The Turnbull Government’s latest health funding package offer to the NT falls short of what Territorians deserve and need.
Earlier this week, Royal Darwin Hospital was on a code yellow working at 140 per cent capacity.
The proposed funding agreement is just another blow to the Territory. In 2014 the then Abbott Government inflicted savage cuts to the hospitals. Today’s offer, rejected by Chief Minister Michael Gunner is just another blow to the already strained hospitals.
The Government is trying to lock the states into the existing funding agreement for the next seven years. The proposed funding agreement is a cut on Labor’s previously negotiated agreements with the states and territories. It does not offer any additional funding for our public hospitals. And it really does leave our patients and our doctors and our nurses in our public hospitals across this country in a desperate state.
Territorians know there is pressure on our public hospitals. They want to see waiting times reduced, yet in this package there is no additional funding to get down elective surgery and emergency department waiting times.
In the last year the Territory has been told that $2 billion will be slashed from its GST redistribution, that funding from every single government school will be cut and that universities will also face funding cuts.
This latest blow confirms – Turnbull and his Government are out of touch what is required for Australia’s public hospitals.