Shadow Treasurer Rob Lucas said the SA Health Chief Executive had confirmed the annual health budget cuts imposed by Premier Weatherill were more than twice as big as any Federal budget cuts.
Mr David Swan told the Budget and Finance Committee that in 2017/18 total health budget cuts will be $603 million per year when compared to the 2013/14 health budget.
State health budget cuts $417 million
Federal health budget cuts $186 million
Total health budget cuts $603 million
This table makes it clear that about 70 per cent of the health cuts in 2017/18 are due to decisions by Mr Weatherill and Mr Koutsantonis.
“So whilst the State Liberals don’t support the Federal health budget cuts, it is now clear the responsibility for health cuts rests substantially with Mr Weatherill and Mr Koutsantonis,” said Mr Lucas.
“Mr Weatherill’s $1 million advertising campaign is based on political spin, trying to blame the Federal Government for State Labor’s financial incompetence and mismanagement over 12 years.”
In other evidence Mr Swan indicated:
• Budget papers indicate health job cuts of 2,544 over the next four years, although actual job cuts might be different to the budgeted number;
• The ongoing dispute between Treasury and SA Health over how many people are employed in SA Health will continue into next year;
• Claims by Mr Weatherill in his $1 million advertising campaign that all Federal health cuts related to public hospital budgets were incorrect;
• If the State Government decided to close a hospital such as Modbury there would be some increased costs in other public hospitals; and,
SA Health and Allscripts, who are responsible for the EPAS IT project, had issued legal claim and counter claim against each other over responsibility for the multimillion dollar blowout in costs of the project.