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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 13 Hansard (Wednesday, 28 November 2018) . . Page.. 4933 ..


Minister Fitzharris continues to support nurses that support Canberrans. The minister announced that the government has signed a new MOU with the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Association to develop a ratios framework that will support strong and sustainable nursing workforce ratios into the future.

In October the government delivered on our election commitment to increase GP bulk-billing in Canberra’s south by supporting a new general practice and the expansion of another in Tuggeranong and a new GP bulk-billing clinic in the Molonglo Valley. We have been out talking to the community about Canberrans’ interest in public health care and it is clear that Canberrans value the investment this government is making in free public health care right across out city. I know the opposition do not want to talk about those achievements and accomplishments but they are real and they are being utilised by Canberrans every single day.

I commend Meegan Fitzharris for her leadership, for her advocacy, for her support and investments in public health care. I also thank all the hardworking staff right across the ACT health system for helping the thousands of patients to get the care they need every day. The minister’s focus, and the government’s focus, remains on what matters most to Canberra families, and that is quality public health care. We reject this political stunt from the opposition, the party that always cuts health spending and does not believe in free public health care.

MR RATTENBURY (Kurrajong—Minister for Climate Change and Sustainability, Minister for Corrections and Justice Health, Minister for Justice, Consumer Affairs and Road Safety and Minister for Mental Health) (10.52): Today we see another motion from Mrs Dunne in which she is seeking to generate a particular political image about the health system to suit her agenda, but the motion is divorced from the reality of the performance of the health system in the ACT.

Minister Fitzharris made this comment in her remarks, and I had prepared similar remarks: neither Minister Fitzharris nor I, with our respective responsibilities in this place, have walked in here at any point this year and said that the health system is perfect. We have been open to acknowledging that in a system as large, as complex, and as busy as this one there will be areas where we must continue to strive for improvement, where there will need to be reform, where there will need to be additional resources, where we will need to consider new approaches, where new issues will emerge.

Neither of us have denied that those challenges are not there, but it is our jobs as the ministers to get on and fix those things. The track record outlined by the minister today of the work that has been done and some comments that I will make in the mental health space demonstrate that we are committed to making our health system as good as it possibly can be, making sure that it delivers for Canberrans and that Canberrans know they will get excellent health care when they need it.

It is a view in the community that most people are very satisfied with the ACT health system, and I meet those people. The Liberal Party are not the only party in this place that talk to people in the community, despite their attempt to generate an image


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