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NSW calls for a fairer share of Federal health funding

20 February, 2007

NSW Minister for Health John Hatzistergos has slammed the Federal Government for its "remote control" approach to the national health system.

Hatzistergos said half-way through the current Australian Health Care Agreement, NSW is now spending more on health care services than Canberra.

"The fact is, the people of NSW are being short-changed by the Federal Government," he said.

"The Commonwealth health system is a massive 5,000 odd bureaucracy which doesn't treat a single patient.

"Yet, every year they come to lecture us on how we should spend our money on health care."

Hatzistergos recently met State and Territory Health Ministers at a summit in Melbourne where he will outline how:

Since signing of the current Australian Health Care Agreement in 2003, NSW funding for public hospitals has increased by 42.3% - compared to the Federal Government's rise of just 14.7 %

In 2005/06, the NSW rate of funding increase for public hospitals was 10.4 percent - the Federal Government's contribution rose by only 5%.

"Through the health budget, in 2003/04 NSW was spending $1.60 for every $1 it gets from Canberra. In 2006/07, we are paying $1.80 compared to Canberra's dollar," he explained.

"That's why I am calling on the Federal Minister for Health to ensure that the health services provided by all states and territories receive a fair share of Canberra's record high budget surpluses."