The future of Shellharbour Hospital remains uncertain, following Health Minister, Brad Hazzard’s announcement today that the NSW Government will seek a not-for-profit organisation to build and run the new Maitland Hospital, scrapping contentious plans for a public-private partnership.
“The Minister has come out guns blazing today, announcing that he wants to see this project expedited with construction of the new hospital to start by the end of the year, once a not for profit provider is sought to build and run it” said Ms Watson.
Based on the operational model in place at Sydney’s St Vincent’s Hospital, the not-for-profit organisation selected will provide money to build and run the hospital on top of $450 million, as promised by the State Government.
“It is disappointing to learn that this particular hospital will not be entirely publicly funded and operated, however I can only hope that the new Maitland Hospital model will provide its community with the first class health services it deserves” said Ms Watson.
“It has been a busy week of backflips for the Health Minister, yet I am wary that out of the five hospitals slated for a public-private partnership by the Government, the future of Shellharbour Hospital still remains very much up in the air”.
“The backflips announced last week, regarding Wyong and Bowral Hospital were a real win for people power and will see these communities receive a wholly publicly-funded and publicly-operated hospital. I demand equal treatment for the residents of Shellharbour”.
“I will accept nothing less than a complete back down by the Government on this issue. I am calling on the Minister to keep Shellharbour Hospital in public hands and ditch plans for its privatisation, as a matter of priority” said Ms Watson.
12 July 2017