Yarrawonga patients may stand to miss out as Yarrawonga District Health Service faces a $104,000 shortfall in next year’s funding because the Federal Government is refusing to pay more than $100 million it owes to Victorians.
Member for Northern Victoria, Mark Gepp said the money owed could mean less nurses and treatments for local patients.
“Despite conceding late last year that Victoria was owed the money, Malcolm Turnbull has failed to reimburse the Victorian Government for treating tens of thousands of extra patients, putting the future funding of local hospitals at risk,” Mr Gepp said.
“These cuts are creating uncertainty for hospitals trying to plan for future patient demand, and the Andrews Labor Government has had to step in and top up funding while waiting for reimbursement.
“But even though the National Health Funding Pool Administrator, an independent expert, has provided advice that Victoria is owed this money, Malcolm Turnbull has refused to pay up, putting at risk the treatment of thousands of extra Victorian patients.
“Instead of playing political games from his waterside mansion in Sydney – Malcolm Turnbull should actually come to Yarrawonga and meet some of the patients his funding cuts will impact,” Mr Gepp said.
Mr Gepp said that despite being home to more than 25 per cent of the nation’s population, Victoria continues to receive just 10 per cent of federal infrastructure funding. In contrast, Malcolm Turnbull’s home state of New South Wales receives a whopping 45 per cent. Victorians deserve better than that.
Health Minister Jill Hennessy said Victorians deserved to know why Mr Turnbull was once again short-changing them. ‘‘This time at the expense of their health. It’s not good enough,’’ she said.
A spokesperson from the Health Minister’s office confirmed the Victorian Government has made provisions so hospitals like Yarrawonga’s do not miss out on the necessary funding but are still seeking to be reimbursed by the Federal Government.