NZ Nurses Organisation (NZNO) members at Southern DHB are sceptical about CEO Carole Heatly’s statement that she will do everything in her power to cut costs at the DHB without affecting patient services.
NZNO industrial services manager for the DHB sector, Lesley Harry says, “NZNO’s experience of cost cutting at other DHBs is that when the CEO is the person approving all spending, staff entitlements for meal breaks and overtime just don’t get approved. And when those entitlements are not approved, the result is short-staffed wards and the potential for compromised patient care. For everyone’s safety, ward and unit managers must be allowed to approve spending when it is needed.”
“The solution to these cost cutting measures doesn’t lie with individual DHBs. The Government needs to step in urgently and fund Southern DHB fairly.”
“We want the Minister of Health to top up Southern DHB’s coffers and make sure there is enough money for capital investment, maintenance and safe staffing levels that allow the nursing team to provide high quality care to every patient, every shift, every day.”
“We are already overworked and understaffed. Safe staffing and patient care must be the top priority when setting health budgets. Minister Ryall - these funding cuts, efficiencies and cost saving measures are happening because you are underfunding DHBs. It’s time to fund DHBs to provide the services New Zealanders need and deserve.” Ms Harry says.