Health | September 12, 2019

Labor’s health funding scalpel taken to local Primary Care Partnerships.

The Andrews Labor Government has taken the scalpel to Victoria’s 28 Primary Care Partnerships (PCPs) as Labor’s health funding cuts continue to be exposed.

Labor Health Minister Jenny Mikakos told Parliament this week that PCPs were not her priority.

When questioned in Parliament today the Minister confirmed that funding for all 28 PCPs has been abolished, leaving many ongoing community programs at a standstill.

The Nationals Member for Lowan, Emma Kealy said Labor had let western Victorian communities down by failing to fund the Southern Grampians Glenelg, Grampians Pyrenees and Wimmera Primary Care Partnerships.

“PCPs bring together local health and human service providers to improve access to services and provide continuity of care for people in their community, focussing on better coordination amongst services,” Ms Kealy said.

“This announcement comes on the back of a long line of failures and funding cuts to frontline health services by Labor since the 2018 election, including dental and community health, women’s health, palliative care services, health protection and cancer treatment technology.

“Our three local PCPs continue to deliver a range of programs with recent focusses including rural mental health, promoting healthy living, family violence and Telehealth programs for cancer care.

“We have fought hard for the Rural Outreach Program and Mental Health First Aid training in the region to fill gaps in the public mental health system. Without PCPs these programs just wouldn’t exist, which would be devastating for mental health support in our region.

“In addition to concerns about these community programs being axed, what will happen to the local jobs for those who provide these vital services?

“Health prevention is often the first step to tackling some of Victoria’s serious health challenges, yet Daniel Andrews has decided to cut funding to this crucial area of need.

“PCPs have played an important role in Victoria’s health network for two decades, yet these latest cuts are another example of Daniel Andrews’ inability to manage money.

“The vital services provided by our PCPs are important to western Victorian residents and we need to make it clear we won’t stand for these cuts.

“If you use any of their services and are concerned about these funding cuts from Labor, I want to hear from you by emailing me at emma.kealy@parliament.vic.gov.au or calling my office on (03) 5382 0097.

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