E tū says it fears health services will deteriorate further in the face of Government denials that DHBs are underfunded.
E tū is the country’s largest private sector union with more than 55,000 members.
“A lot of our members are in the Counties Manukau area, where services have been so under-funded we have the highest rate of people waiting to get eye treatment,” says Jill Ovens, E tū’s Industry Coordinator for Public and Commercial Services.
Jill says unacceptable wait times for urology services in Dunedin are also symptomatic of chronic under-funding of health care.
“Our hospitals are struggling and our members are struggling like everyone else to access basic services,” she says.
“Many members are also on low wages, living in mouldy, unhealthy homes and they and their children have high health needs.”
She says that flows through into increased demand for basic health care.
Jill says she fears wait times will grow longer as the Government insists DHBs live within their means.
“The only way they can do that is by cutting services and that will affect our members who need those services.
“In Southland, they sacked the board two years ago and put in a Commissioner and it hasn’t helped the situation at all. What’s needed is more funding and for that we need a change of Government.”
For more information, contact:
Jill Ovens E tū Industry Coordinator, Public and Commercial Services ph.027 446 4966
The Council of Trade Unions estimates $2.3 billion is needed to restore funding for 2017/18 to 2009/10 levels.
However, the CTU says only $0.8 billion was provided so the shortfall compared to 2010 is $1.4 billion.
It means that the next Government will need to find well over $2 billion for 2018/19 if it wishes to restore the value of funding.