Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 8 Hansard (26 June) . . Page.. 2255 ..
MR SMYTH: The question is, Mr Speaker: why are they getting only one extra outpatient a day in your health service?
MR SPEAKER: I think the question has been fully answered.
MR STANHOPE: I am happy to repeat the commitment of this government to health service delivery in the ACT. I am happy to go to the range of initiatives that were funded in this budget. I am happy to talk about the additional $400,000 in alcohol and drug initiatives. I am happy to talk about the additional $4 million in mental health services. I am happy to talk about the additional $4 million in respite care for the most vulnerable and frail in this community-the people that are pushed the hardest in this community.
MR SPEAKER: There is a point of order. Mr Stanhope, would you resume your seat.
Mr Smyth: Mr Speaker, I raise a point of order under standing order 118. The question is about the extra 350 outpatient services and why it is so few, when the government knows, and says in its own press release, that need goes up 71/2 per cent, or more than 3,000 places, at Calvary. When will he admit he has failed the outpatient system?
MR SPEAKER: Mr Smyth, it is a bit rich, I think, to ask a question about health in relation to outputs of one of the smaller areas of health and not expect a response from the relevant minister in relation to the broader question. I cannot see how you would rule that to be irrelevant.
Mr Smyth: Mr Speaker, it is irrelevant in that the question is about the Chief Minister's own press release, where he says that they know there is a 71/2 per cent growth in the need for outpatient services at Calvary. That is more than 3,000 positions a day. In his own document-this is how relevant it is-they highlight the fact that there are only 350 extra outpatient services across the entire health system. What I want to know is: why has he let down accident and emergency and outpatient services across the system? That is what I want to know.
MR STANHOPE: Mr Speaker, for the information of members, I will just conclude on the other initiatives that we are providing in relation to health and the system of health and community care in Canberra.
There is an extra $629,000 next year for home and community care matching funds. There is, as I said, the extra $10.3 million for disability. There is an extra $450,000 for next year for synthetic blood products. There is an extra $300,000 next year for psycho-geriatric care-once again, providing support for the most vulnerable people in our community.
There is an additional $17 million for the establishment of a medical school at the ANU. There was $11 million for the finalisation of the nursing pay rise-another one of your gunna initiatives. That was $11 million which we provided. We provided it-you were gunna, but you never got around to it.
There is an additional $2.8 million for increases in the SACS payment. To answer the question-this goes directly to the heart of it-there is an additional $8.7 million in this budget, on top of the $8.7 million in the appropriation bill, for funding pressures to the