Systems matter, but money talks loudest
I broadly support Pae Ora in terms of its ambition to close persistent health iniquities. The Maori Health Authority, however imperfect from a Tiriti point of view, was long overdue.
But ultimately none of this will count for anything without a step-up in terms of system-wide funding and targeted relief. Removing user-pays from GP visits is a must if Pae Ora is to get off the ground. This, alongside increases in general health expenditure, are however a political football. Having a functional health system will never become a matter of consensus where one party remains ideologically dedicated to pushing patients into private care.
I recently had surgery at a private hospital. It was that or wait four months for my condition to spiral into a life-threatening emergency. I and one other person were the only patients in a ward fit for at least fifty. We have the capacity to treat the sick in this country. What we don't have is the courage. We already subcontract services to these providers. Why not go that extra step and tap into that surplus capacity? That might in the immediate term relieve some of the pressure on our hospitals.
Why the contribution is important
by sheen on March 10, 2023 at 03:40PM