If you are even just remotely interested in the world of health policy, reform and politics, you can’t afford to miss this piece.
I’ve never heard of the author before – a Canberra writer called Myles Peterson who was hired by the federal Department of Health and Ageing as a speechwriter – but suspect he won’t be doing any more work for DOHA for quite some while. At least not under this Government.
But if he’s hoping for a gig writing scripts for The Hollowmen or similar, he’s just made quite a pitch.
Update, 9pm: For DOHA’s response, see this blog from Nick Miller at The Age. DOHA’s response begins:
“With regard to the ramblings of Mr Myles Peterson, the Department of Health and Ageing totally refutes the allegations by this person who worked in a low level position within the public affairs unit of the Department, leaving to go home one night and never coming back. His disappearance was of great concern to the Department which worried about his health and safety. However, numerous attempts to contact to him were in vane [sic].”
Don’t know about you, but I find the professed concern for Peterson’s health just a tad unconvincing. It also seems more than a little cynical, an effort to damage his reliability by raising questions about his “health”. No matter the rights and wrongs of Peterson’s article, this seems like dirty, dirty strategy on the part of DOHA and doesn’t do much to restore credibility. Never mind the spelling…
From conferences and other such events I seem to have accumulated at an entire kitchen cupboard full of water bottles promoting various DoHA programs. Even with my family’s current impressive rate of water-bottle-attrition, my 3 year old will attending university accompanied by a water bottle promoting HealthInsite or some other long-forgotten initiative. Maybe DoHA knows something that I don’t about the link between the number of water bottles produced per head of population and life expectancy.
So how did we think government worked? Hollowmen was far more realistic than the media or the government would have us think. Yes Minister/Prome Minister was compulsory viewing too for the same crowd because it was reality TV.
From the article “A few months before the department hired me, I spent eight agonising hours in emergency waiting for treatment for a chronic case of food poisoning. I was eventually diagnosed, pumped full of morphine, rehydrated intravenously and strapped to a bed in the emergency ward to recover overnight.”
Something not quite right. Could “Myles” be pursued for more details?
While Myles Peterson’s piece was an entertaining read a lot of it sounds like he didn’t let the facts get in the way of a good story.
Speechwriter – sounds more like a bloke to do a rough first cut.
8 hours in A&E with chronic food poisoning? Had it been going on for a few months? Maybe he means acute food poisoning?
[I don’t doubt that Canberra health bureaucrats don’t know the difference between chronic and acute]
Pumped full of morphine – you wish
Strapped to a bed in emergency – for food poisoning? – huh wtf – he was violent?
oh I didn’t realise square brackets did a quote.
And if the yourhealth website is any indication of how this government understand the use of the net then no wonder none of them are challenging Conroy on his nutty projects
There’s a distinct whiff about the story, with a fair dose of hyperbole in it if nothing else. Contracted-in public servants can have a tough time but I think there may be some reflections in the piece that unduly favour Myles’ position.
That being said, the website stuff seems credible on the face of it.
Did Myles Peterson write Roxon’s medieval maternity reform speeches? These bills are in the Senate tomorrow…
Nicola could have used your help Myles last Thursday night in Ballarat at the Community Cabinet meeting when she scored the trifecta.
Watch her getting grilled by the women from Ballarat over these disgraceful laws that remove a woman’s right to make choices in health care – the usual spin from Nicola but women do not buy it.