The latest brawl about the lack of a Paediatric Intensive Care Unit at Townsville Hospital is part of the ongoing saga of a failure to identify and adequately fund essential North Queensland infrastructure, according to Jenny Stirling Greens candidate for the seat of Townsville.
“The State government says it wants Townsville to be the 2nd capital city in the state. However there does not seem to be a corresponding commitment to the future health needs of an increased population in North Queensland”.
“Yes we need our highway to be flood proofed, yes we need better funding for our schools but nothing is more important than the ongoing health of our children”.
“The idea that our health services should be centralised to avoid duplication does not take into account the massive distances that rural and regional people have to travel in Queensland to get proper health outcomes for their children”.
“North Queensland is too far away to always successfully deliver these specialist services in a Brisbane centric model. So while the government is busy reorganising Qld Health, they should also be looking at a model which focuses on sustaining all parts of the state. And that means that the Townsville Hospital, the regional hospital for all of North Queensland from Sarina, out to Mt Isa up to the tip of Cape York, will need to offer the range of services that are currently offered by major hospitals in Brisbane.
“The Treasury is prepared to fund the Commonwealth Games at the Gold Coast, is prepared to subsidize V8s in Townsville to the tune of $27.5 million all up; and fund redundant coal infrastructure but is not prepared to deliver the kinds of services state governments are elected to office for.
“Not good enough”, says the Greens candidate for Townsville.
For further comment, please contact Jenny Stirling: 04 244 39 098