Greens oppose privatisation of five public hospitals in NSW

MEDIA RELEASE – 15 September 2016

NSW Greens health spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham slammed the Baird Governments announcement that they would hold an expression of interest process to outsource public health services at five NSW public hospitals to private operators, saying it was a step towards the Americanisation of health services and would result in fewer services for greater cost and far less accountability.

“The Greens will strongly oppose the partial privatisation of the public hospital system  This is the Liberal Party’s privatisation ideology being implemented  despite the detrimental impact privatisation has on the public health system and the strong public support for health services remaining in public hands,” said Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham.

“The recent scandal at St Vincent’s demonstrates that having private operators running public hospitals reduces transparency and accountability. We have a private hospital covering up a scandal, lying to the minister and the public, and beyond scrutiny of the parliament.  Now Minister Skinner wants to expand this lack of accountability to five new hospitals in NSW.

“The American experience with health care exposes the fallacy that private provision of health services is somehow more efficient or better quality.  Premier Baird and Minister Skinner are blinkered if they think following America is the way to go with NSW’s public hospital system.

“This is a minister under pressure putting private profits and ideology before the public interest and people.

“The private sector is always going to be less transparent and less accountable and more motivated in turning a profit. Inevitably private operators will seek to provide services that are the most profitable, which is not necessarily in the broader public interest.”

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