Page 2055 - Week 07 - Wednesday, 28 June 2023

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(3) acknowledges that:

(a) the ACT Government failed to implement phase 1 of nurse-to-patient ratios by their own deadline of 1 June 2022;

(b) the ANMF said during the IRPNMW that they have been calling for a workforce strategy for “6-7 years”;

(c) the Australian Medical Association said during an interview on 2CC that they have been calling for changes for junior doctors for “some time now”;

(d) the ACT Government in 2021, had still not met recommendations from as early as 2002 to increase nurse practitioners’ scope of practice;

(e) less students are choosing to study nursing and midwifery at UC and fewer ANU medical graduates are accepting offers from CHS;

(f) a “holistic and robust” health workforce strategy has not been delivered because “Current health workforce data in the ACT is inconsistent and insufficient for health planners to have a clear understanding of the current workforce.”; and

(g) the ACT Government failed to achieve a 30 percent reduction in musculoskeletal and general incidents as listed in the Work Health and Safety Strategy 2018-2022; and

(4) calls on the ACT Government to:

(a) acknowledge that it has failed to improve the necessary conditions to attract and retain a health workforce and provide adequate public healthcare services for the Territory; and

(b) table by the end of the sitting week:

(i) a table tracking the implementation or progress, to date, of all budgetary measures for the health and wellbeing portfolio since 2014; and

(ii) the most recent Parliamentary and Governing Agreement and Election Commitment Reporting for the health and wellbeing portfolio.

On 14 June, I attended the Standing Committee on Health and Community Wellbeing’s inquiry into a recovery plan for nursing and midwifery workers. In this inquiry, we heard from the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation. The branch secretary, when answering a question about why the ACT has failed to attract nurses and midwives, said:

There are all sorts of areas in the health services that have been neglected for too long, and that has had an impact on how nurses and midwives feel valued or not and whether they are supported to provide the care they need to provide.

The ANMF peak body for nurses and midwives has said that the government has neglected health services for too long. An example of this would be Mr Daniel’s response to my question asking how long the union had been calling for a health workforce strategy. His answer was, “Around six to seven year.”—six to seven years for the government to finally start thinking about workforce planning.


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