Sensible use of the private sector

The Dom Post reports:

About 250 Wellington patients will have their operations in private hospitals after district boards decided they could not meet Health Ministry elective surgery targets without help.

Hutt District Health Board is negotiating with Boulcott Hospital to perform about 50 mostly ear, nose and throat operations, while Capital & Coast District Health Board has asked private hospitals to carry out 200 cataract operations.

Hutt chief executive Michael Hundleby said the board turned to Boulcott Hospital because it was concerned that Wellington Hospital – which does 40 per cent of Hutt DHB’s surgery – did not have the capacity to complete the operations.

Some on the left will cry out that this is . I suppose they would rather those patients simply remain on the waiting list rather than have the private sector provide the operation. Who cares about quality of life so long as we are ideologically pure eh.

Health Minister said he was not concerned that DHBs were using the private sector to help them meet the health targets, which were introduced last year.

“Our priority is that patients are treated and in the Wellington region we’ve had a record total of 11,232 patients getting the elective surgery they need.”

Great.

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