Doctors blast minister

THE Tweed Hospital Medical Staff Council (MSC) has called Health Minister Jillian Skinner "cynical and dismissive" following her failure to appoint a Tweed clinician member to the Northern NSW Local Health District Board.

Ms Skinner has denied the allegations, saying she had not walked away from any commitment made to the council.

MSC chairman Ian McPhee pointed out Ms Skinner told the Daily News on September 14 "the process of recruiting a local clinician to the board is under way and I hope to make the successful candidate aware in the next few days" and has failed to do so.

"I think the lack of re- sponse from the minister is very cynical; the minister is toying with the Tweed community in a very cynical manner," Mr McPhee said.

"Minister Skinner has now reneged on two commitments.

"It is astounding that is has taken this long to make a decision when applicants have been known for a long period of time.

"I think we have to con- tinue to let the public know about the minister's dismissive attitude."

Mr McPhee said the delay in appointment means the Tweed community has no voice on the Northern NSW Local Health District Board and therefore cannot be part of the decision making process.

"This is occurring at a time when critical decisions are being made regarding the health district with no representative from Tweed," Mr McPhee said.

Ms Skinner said the process was under way to appoint clinician from the Tweed.

"The appointment of a Tweed clinician to the board is under way and candidates are currently being evaluated," Ms Skinner said.

"The appointment process takes time because it is important that the new appointee has the appropriate mix of skills and expertise to fulfil the role.

"I am committed to ensuring we appoint the clinician most able to contribute to the greatly enhanced responsibilities of board."



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