Tweed to benefit from state's largest ever health investment
AN extra 400 medical staff will be allocated to the Northern Rivers as part of the largest ever health workforce boost in NSW history.
The Berejiklian Government committed to $2.8 billion in funding for an additional 8300 hospital staff on Sunday, with an extra 1060 doctors to reduce wait times in emergency departments and elective surgeries as well as increasing the workforce in psychiatric care.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian said 45 per cent of the new staff will work in regional areas.
Within an hour, NSW Labor said it would match the government's commitment.
The Northern Rivers Local Health District will benefit from 282 more nurses and midwives, 32 more doctors, 38 more allied health workers and 50 more hospital support workers.
Tweed MP Geoff Provest said the investment was unprecedented and would assist with nurse-to-patient ratios.
"I think it will be a great plus, particularly to our nurses and midwives who do an extraordinarily great job, and this is more hands on deck,” he said.
"This means patients will have more nurses to look after them and nurses will have more colleagues to share the workload.”
Mr Provest said he believed the announcement put to bed Labor's "Schools and Hospitals before Stadiums” campaign.
"They've tried to roll that campaign out up here, but if you look at the Tweed we're getting a $584m new hospital, we've got $100m going into our schools, we've got money going into homelessness and social housing, and now we have literally hundreds of new doctors and nurses coming in here, all budgeted for, all being paid for, it's just a waste of time with their stadium issue and the Tweed's being well looked after.”
But Shadow Health Minister Walt Secord said Labor would match the commitment and the National's announcement was "scant on detail and leaves some unanswered questions.”
"This includes whether nurse to patient ratios form any part of the government announcement, whether they will be registered nurses, enrolled nurses or assistants in nursing, and in what disciplines will they will be employed,” he said.
"The Liberal and National government have a history of over-promising, being scant on detail and under delivering, particularly in health.
"Labor will always deliver more on health.
"The Liberals, meanwhile, can't be trusted as their priority lies in spending $2.2 billion on stadiums.”