Liberals’ treatment of hospitals cut deep

Bendigo’s elected representatives will cut up a cheque to Bendigo Health for $24,850,404 on Tuesday, July 1 – the amount Tony Abbott has ripped from the hospital in the Budget.

Bendigo’s elected representatives will cut up a cheque to Bendigo Health for $24,850,404 on Tuesday, July 1 – the amount Tony Abbott has ripped from the hospital in the Budget.

Tony Abbott’s attack on health comes into effect on July 1, leading to central Victorian hospitals being nearly $30 million worse off over the next five years.

The slashing in funding comes on top of $831 million in cuts by the Napthine Government over the past four years.

Federal Member for Bendigo, Lisa Chesters MP, said the enormity of the cuts will deeply affect Bendigo Health.

“Tony Abbott is asking the states and territories to find money they do not have or be forced to cut nurses, sack doctors, close hospital beds, put off infrastructure upgrades and sack frontline health workers,” she said.

“These cuts will increase emergency department waiting times, increase elective surgery waiting times, and reduce the number of hospital beds across the country.”

Victorian Member for Bendigo West, Maree Edwards, said patients in regional Victoria were reeling from Liberal-National State Government cuts of $831 million, with elective surgery waiting times blown out, overcrowded emergency departments and an ambulance service in crisis.

“Denis Napthine and his Health Minister David Davis have barely raised a whimper against the Abbott Government’s health cuts. They will not stand up and fight these cuts for regional Victorian patients.

“Clearly under the Liberals - Federal or State - if you live in regional Victoria, and you get sick or are in need of an ambulance –you’re on your own!”

Victorian Member for Bendigo East, Jacinta Allan, said the latest ‘Victorian Health Services Performance Data’ showed Bendigo Hospital failed to meet benchmarks in several categories including emergency department response and elective surgery waiting times.

“Central Victorians already know what it's like to suffer under Liberal to cuts to our hospital. Tony Abbott and Denis Napthine have both hacked into health services in this region.

“The Federal Budget is a horror budget for patients because it's a Liberal Budget. As Tony Abbott's man in Bendigo, Greg Bickley owes our community answers about what services won’t be offered to local patients as a result of these massive Liberal cuts."