Govt control freaks making medical careers unattractive, say Libz

14 December 2005 14:32:00

PRESS RELEASE Libertarianz Health

Libertarianz health spokesman and general practitioner Richard McGrath believes worsening doctor shortages in New Zealand are a natural consequence of the nationalization of medical care seventy years ago and the failure by successive governments to fully deregulate the health sector since that time.

“General practitioners are de facto public servants now,” said Dr McGrath. “In many cases over half their income comes from money stolen by the government as tax and then redistributed as corporate welfare.”

“The government has set up buffer organizations called PHOs that dish out taxpayer dollars on their behalf,” he added

“This isolates the state from direct responsibility as public hospitals fail to meet demand and people keep dying on waiting lists.”

“Doctors have to apply each year for a work permit which the state calls a practicing certificate. The Medical Council – set up by government, not the profession – dictate the terms under which a GP may practice medicine. They can impose supervision on any doctor who refuses to enter their recertification courses.”

“Any rise in the fees charged by supposedly private medical practices can be challenged by health sector bureaucrats whose jobs would not exist under a free and open health market.”

“What free-thinking independent-minded doctor would want to practice under those conditions?” asked Dr McGrath.

“Fortunately there is one political party who wants to give doctors, nurses and other health care providers the freedom to market and deliver their services in response to the wishes of consumers, not the demands of politicians.”

“Libertarianz would abolish the Medical Council and allow the medical profession to police its membership. But it would also allow competition by alternative practitioners on an equal footing, by removing the subsidies for orthodox primary medical care.”

“It would abolish ACC and make accident insurance optional, and it would privatize hospitals, deploying hundreds of health bureaucrats into real jobs.”

“Libertarianz would shred the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act which is not needed. Consumer organizations are quite capable of assessing the merits or otherwise of doctors, the vast majority of whom would prefer to settle complaints through private mediation.”

“The state should stop trying to micro-manage the medical profession,” Dr McGrath said. “It’s scaring some potentially great doctors away from careers in general practice.”

Richard McGrath
Libertarianz Health Deregulation Spokesman
[email protected]
0273 222 907

Libertarianz: More Freedom – Less Government
www.libertarianz.org.nz