Health Reforms: Index

The Commercialisation of New Zealand 1997
The Whimpering of the State: Policy After MMP (Chapters 10-11) 1999.

The New Zealand Health Reforms in Context (Chapter 9 & Appendix) June 2002.

The Managerial Revolution
Systemic Failure (December 1995)
Out of Tune: Even the Officials Admit the Health Reforms Were Fatally Flawed. (December 1997)
Money for Jams: the Government Response to Roading Reforms is Commercialisation (January 1998)
Two Styles of Management (July 1999)
The Cult of the Manager: Those Who Can, Do; Those Who Cant, Become Managers (February 2000)

It’s in the Blood (December 1992)
Health Disservice (April 1997)
The Seven Percent Solution: A Background to the Proposed Health Referendum (January 1998)
The Hospital Balance Sheet Crisis (July 1999)
Funding Public Health Care: How and How Much? (March 2002)
Well-health and the Future of the Pharmacist (August 2003)

From Listener 21 November 1998.
A cartoon published as the Muldoon government was dying claimed “being prime minister means never having to say you’re sorry.” The privilege has been extended to ministers. Consider the international survey which found New Zealanders despairing of their health system. Some 32 percent believed the health system “has so much wrong it needs complete rebuilding”, and their negative views of the recent changes bottomed with the Canadians.

Over half identified waiting times or the level of government funding as the worst problems. Which is not surprising given that the government’s cut back on health funding amounts to over $2.5 billion since 1991. In effect the government closes the public health system for two months every year. No wonder everyone has doubts about whether it working for them.

Rather than acknowledging the public disquiet and apologising for the mess made by his predecessors (Simon Upton, Bill Birch, and Jenny Shipley) and their well paid advisers, Minister of Health, Bill English, blamed the debate on health reforms. But the critics got it largely right. As well as making up the funding deficit, the government might give the public an apology by knighting Sandra Coney, and Drs Alan Gray, Peter Roberts and Alister Scott of the Coalition on Public Health.