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    ron batagol

    Reading the comparative analysis , of the health policies of the two major Parties, by luminaries in various Health domains, a common ( and entirely predictable) theme occurs. Most seem to think that Labor does have at least the start of an agenda to tackle the dire situation in public hospitals, and a (separate) agenda for improving primary care ( tell me why did they do 2 separate Reviews for these intertwined and interdependent health environments, for heaven’s sake!). Labor is also making a big publicity plug for developing and using e health programmes. Then there are these highly-trumpeted super clinics- great idea- health professionals working collaboratively in the one location etc. ( yes, potentially even pharmacists!). On the other hand, the Coalition’s plans have elements that are better than Labor’s- mental health, more hospital beds, but it’s all very disjointed and fragmented, and no indication of what they plan to do about e health.

    My overall concern is that, so far, Labor has proved to be great on conceptuality but pretty lousy on practical application ( promise I’ll just stick to health issues here, & won’t even mention $million tuckshops, live-wired, lethal pink batts, or fibre-optic broadband which can’t get high-speed access to international sites until and unless the local ISPs invest money to lower the contention ratio !).

    Now, on Health, so far, under Labor’s plans, we will have local Hospital and Primary Care networks operating separately, 4 or 5 Super Clinics, ( with 3 in marginal Labor electorates!), and the activities of major GP clinics in these areas being duplicated, and $467 towards e Health that experts have devised as a “drop in the ocean”, with no indication as to how they are going to link and interact, and keep up to date with the myriad of existing technology programmes already running in hospitals, doctors surgeries, and other health professional sites!

    So, in summary, one lot doesn’t want to invest in Health and the other one thinks that mindlessly throwing money and public bureaucratic resources at all the problems will magically produce the health nirvana that we all dream about.

    Am I being overly cynical on this? Moi? never!

    Ron Batagol

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