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Weatherill’s hospital pass

The State Liberals are demanding that Health Minister Jack Snelling stand up to Premier Jay Weatherill and immediately rule out closing yet another Adelaide hospital.

“Premier Weatherill’s petulant threat to close another hospital now that his plan to increase the GST to 15 per cent has been quashed must be rejected by the Health Minister,” said Shadow Health Minister Stephen Wade.

“This is a reckless threat to the health of South Australians – 12 months into the Transforming Health fiasco and Labor still cannot explain how the system will cope when the Repat, Hampstead and St Margaret’s close.

“Jack Snelling presides over the worst performing hospital system amongst the States and that is before he shuts the Repat and slashes emergency department services at the Modbury, TQEH and Noarlunga Hospitals.

“Shutting the Repat and cutting ED services is going to be a disaster for Adelaide’s hospital network, closing another hospital on top of that would be an unmitigated catastrophe.”

The Australian Medical Association’s recent ‘Public Hospital Report Card’ showed South Australia is 10% worse than the national average on the key indicator of Emergency Department waiting times.

Indeed the AMA Report Card showed emergency department performance in South Australia has gone backwards by 12% in the last 4 years.

“Under Jack Snelling hospitals in South Australia have been placed on life support, Jay Weatherill is now threatening to pull the plug out of the wall,” said Mr Wade.

“On the day Premier Weatherill was threatening to close another South Australian hospital the Lyell McEwin, TQEH and Noarlunga Hospital EDs were all on Code White (overflowing) and the RAH, Flinders and Women’s and Children’s were on Code Red (full).

“Premier Weatherill must come clean to the people of South Australia - the real reason he is threatening to close a hospital is because of the $640 million cost blow-out on the nRAH and the $200 million cost blow-out on electronic patient record system (EPAS).

“The Weatherill Labor Government’s appalling mismanagement of South Australia’s hospital system is the reason he’s the only Premier contemplating closing four public hospitals.”