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Labor will solve the Liberals’ waiting list mess once and for all

  • Plan to clear excessive elective surgery and outpatient waiting lists over next four years under Labor
  • Record 51,388 people on the outpatient waitlist and 12,086 people on the elective surgery waitlist under the Liberals
  • Labor’s plan means more doctors, more appointments and less waiting

Labor has today unveiled a $137 million plan to fix the Liberals’ health crisis in Tasmania’s hospitals and clear the out-of-control elective surgery and outpatient waitlists with more doctors, more appointments and less waiting time.

Labor Leader Rebecca White said with waitlists blowing out by more than 70 per cent since 2018, Tasmania cannot afford another four years under the Gutwein Government which has over the past seven years turned the state’s health system into a disaster in which Tasmanians are literally dying waiting for help.

“Tasmania’s health system simply will not survive under more neglect and a continued, determined lack of action by the Gutwein Government,” Ms White said.

“That is why this election is so vital – Tasmanians have a crucial choice between Labor’s plan to solve this mess or more of the same broken promises and thought bubbles from the Liberals.

“Our fully costed $137 million plan will mean more doctors, more appointments and less waiting.

“It means more people will receive the health care they need when they need it and closer to home, providing a higher standard of care.

“It means an additional 65 permanent doctors – including 35 medical specialists and 30 surgical specialists – across the state to clear the elective surgery and outpatient waitlist

“It means an additional 150 nurses and midwives across the state to improve standard of patient care. It means getting Tasmanians out of impossible situations where they are living in chronic pain waiting for help that will remain years away under the Liberals.”

Shadow Health Minister Dr Bastian Seidel said Labor’s plan would also prioritise screening for patients with suspected cancer, guaranteeing that they will be seen within two weeks.

“Under the Gutwein Government nationally agreed targets, particularly in relation to bowel cancer, are not being met, with less than 20 per cent of referred patients with suspected cancer being seen on time,” Dr Seidel said.

“The fact is every election the Liberals attempt to con Tasmanians that they will throw more and more taxpayer’s money to fix the crisis they have created in Tasmania’s hospitals, but Tasmanians end up with more of the same chaos.

“The Gutwein Government has now tried it on again, attempting to roll out health policy which really does question why they have failed to invest in health over the last seven years. In the meantime, tens of thousands of Tasmanians are literally living in pain every day waiting to access health care and in some terrible circumstances literally dying.”

Key points:

A Majority Labor Government will;

  • Employ an additional 65 permanent Doctors (35 medical specialists and 30 surgical specialists) across the state to clear the elective surgery and outpatient waitlist
  • Employ an additional 150 Nurses and Midwives across the state to improve standard of patient care
  • Invest in a major IT upgrade to enhance telehealth and online health services

Rebecca White MP
Labor Leader

Dr Bastian Seidel MLC
Shadow Health Minister