Doctors back Abbott on hospital boards and intelligent spending

ADF – 3 February 2012

The Australian Doctors’ Fund (ADF) has welcomed comments by the Leader of the Opposition, the Hon Tony Abbott in his address to the National Press Club on 31 January 2012 that a future Coalition Government will support public hospital boards.

Spokesman for the Australian Doctors’ Fund, Dr Stan Doumani said, “that independent community based public hospital boards had been long standing ADF policy”.”Much of our early public hospital infrastructure was built by community minded citizens acting in good faith to establish facilities that would provide ongoing care for fellow Australians. There is no reason why community minded citizens cannot contribute to the improvement and ongoing development of our public hospital facilities,” Dr Doumani said in Canberra today.

The ADF supports Mr Abbott’s calls, “for more intelligent spending” by government.

“An urgent review of what has been delivered for the $5 billion (as of 2008) Deloitte claims has already been spent on e-health with only ‘marginal progress’ should be a priority.”

Dr Doumani said there is a lot of money going into areas that have no proven benefit and are ill defined.

Comments by A/Prof Terry Hannan in a recent Senate submission on legislation to introduce the Personally Controlled Electronic Health Record (PCEHR) are consistent with the Australian Doctors’ Fund research on this project.

A/Prof Hannan, consultant physician and past President of the College of Health Infomatics stated that, in regard to the PCEHR “with so many definitions of an e-record system, it indicates that the whole concept of the electronic health record is difficult to compartmentalise and understand. It may even indicate, we still do not know what it actually is”.

“This adds weight to a need for a review of spending in this area,” Dr Doumani said.

Contact details:
Dr Stan Doumani Ph: 02 6288 6008 (BH)
Mr Stephen Milgate Ph: 02 9567 5595 0425 283 411

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