Labour calls for more health funding

Party pinpoints health as key election issue.

Party pinpoints health as key election issue.

ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL: Labour MP Kelvin Davis and East Coast candidate Kiri Allan say increased funding of the public health system will be a key component of their party’s general election campaign. Election day is September 23. Picture by Liam Clayton

EAST Coast Labour candidate Kiri Allan says health professionals are working in high risk, underfunded environments, which is undermining the health system’s ability to provide the healthcare New Zealanders deserve.

Ms Allan said she supported the PSA-led coalition called YesWeCare, which is campaigning for what it describes as “a fully funded public health system".

“I’m hearing the same stories almost weekly from people who have to choose between visits to the doctor or paying the power bill.

“I’ve been out knocking on doors for the past few months. I’m meeting people who are on the waiting list for elective surgeries, living at home, living in pain.

“Most of these people are elderly, waiting for hip and knee surgeries, and their lives are severely impacted by not receiving the orthopaedic surgery they require.

“It’s simply not right that families are having to choose between receiving necessary health care or living in a healthy home.

“This is not the type of New Zealand I grew up in.”

Hauora Tairawhiti

Ms Allan acknowledged the hard-working efforts of Hauora Tairawhiti, who were trying to provide elective surgeries for those that needed them.

“But the reality is, Hauora Tairawhiti is not funded for elective surgeries they provide that exceed the targets the Government has set for them.

“These targets are simply too low to cater for the needs of the local Gisborne community.”

Ms Allan was accompanied in Gisborne by MPs Kelvin Davis (Te Tai Tokerau) and Stuart Nash (Napier).

The MPs also visited First Fresh, Wi Pere Trust and Activate Tairawhiti.

Mr Davis said the public health sector was underfunded by $1.7 billion dollars. That would change under a Labour Government.

Gisborne had great potential in boosting revenue earned from tourism, particularly with Maori culture and history.

2019 would be an exciting time with the opening ceremony of sestercennial commemorations marking the 1769 meeting of Cook and Maori to be held in Gisborne.

Mr Davis said Labour was out to win Waiariki in September’s general election. It was only seat out of the seven Maori electorates not currently held by Labour.

Maori Party leader Te Ururoa Flavell retained Waiariki in 2014. Mr Davis defeated Mana leader Hone Harawira by 1119 votes and Labour won back the seats of Tamaki Makarau, the seat formerly held by retired Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples and Te Tai Hauauru, where the Maori Party’s Tariana Turia had also stood down.

Labour would also launch a strong campaign targeting the party vote.

Asked to comment on Maori King Tuheitia who broke with the tradition of political neutrality by endorsing the Maori Party, Mr Davis said, “I don’t care what he thinks”.

Mr Davis said the King’s comments were more a reflection of the people around him in a reference to Maori Party president Tukoroirangi Morgan, a former New Zealand First MP, who is a close adviser of the King.

EAST Coast Labour candidate Kiri Allan says health professionals are working in high risk, underfunded environments, which is undermining the health system’s ability to provide the healthcare New Zealanders deserve.

Ms Allan said she supported the PSA-led coalition called YesWeCare, which is campaigning for what it describes as “a fully funded public health system".

“I’m hearing the same stories almost weekly from people who have to choose between visits to the doctor or paying the power bill.

“I’ve been out knocking on doors for the past few months. I’m meeting people who are on the waiting list for elective surgeries, living at home, living in pain.

“Most of these people are elderly, waiting for hip and knee surgeries, and their lives are severely impacted by not receiving the orthopaedic surgery they require.

“It’s simply not right that families are having to choose between receiving necessary health care or living in a healthy home.

“This is not the type of New Zealand I grew up in.”

Hauora Tairawhiti

Ms Allan acknowledged the hard-working efforts of Hauora Tairawhiti, who were trying to provide elective surgeries for those that needed them.

“But the reality is, Hauora Tairawhiti is not funded for elective surgeries they provide that exceed the targets the Government has set for them.

“These targets are simply too low to cater for the needs of the local Gisborne community.”

Ms Allan was accompanied in Gisborne by MPs Kelvin Davis (Te Tai Tokerau) and Stuart Nash (Napier).

The MPs also visited First Fresh, Wi Pere Trust and Activate Tairawhiti.

Mr Davis said the public health sector was underfunded by $1.7 billion dollars. That would change under a Labour Government.

Gisborne had great potential in boosting revenue earned from tourism, particularly with Maori culture and history.

2019 would be an exciting time with the opening ceremony of sestercennial commemorations marking the 1769 meeting of Cook and Maori to be held in Gisborne.

Mr Davis said Labour was out to win Waiariki in September’s general election. It was only seat out of the seven Maori electorates not currently held by Labour.

Maori Party leader Te Ururoa Flavell retained Waiariki in 2014. Mr Davis defeated Mana leader Hone Harawira by 1119 votes and Labour won back the seats of Tamaki Makarau, the seat formerly held by retired Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples and Te Tai Hauauru, where the Maori Party’s Tariana Turia had also stood down.

Labour would also launch a strong campaign targeting the party vote.

Asked to comment on Maori King Tuheitia who broke with the tradition of political neutrality by endorsing the Maori Party, Mr Davis said, “I don’t care what he thinks”.

Mr Davis said the King’s comments were more a reflection of the people around him in a reference to Maori Party president Tukoroirangi Morgan, a former New Zealand First MP, who is a close adviser of the King.

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