ACT Deputy Leader and Health spokesperson Brooke van Velden has this morning accepted a petition signed by more than 10,000 people calling for urgent action on breast screening....
ACT Deputy Leader and Health spokesperson Brooke van Velden has this morning accepted a petition signed by more than 10,000 people calling for urgent action on breast screening.
“Lockdowns have taken a massive toll on New Zealanders. We have repeatedly heard about the public health response to COVID, but so many other health issues have taken a back seat,” says Miss van Velden.
“Breast cancer has touched the lives of too many New Zealanders. Modelling from the Breast Cancer Foundation shows that at least 133 women are living with undetected breast cancer because screening was cancelled or delayed because of lockdown.
“These women are someone’s grandmother, mother, sister, daughter or wife. It’s heart breaking. Breast screening has been set back 10 years by COVID lockdowns.
“The cost of COVID will haunt us for decades, financially, emotionally and with our health and education.
“The Ardern Government has made much of delivering the world’s first ‘Wellbeing’ budget, while Treasury has gone down the rabbit hole of developing a ‘Living Standards Framework.’ Both initiatives were supposed to ensure Government policy took account of New Zealanders’ overall wellbeing.
“During the past 18 months, Government policy has acutely impacted sensitive areas of New Zealanders’ wellbeing, but we’ve heard nothing about it from the Government and Treasury has been quiet as a mouse. Both the ‘Wellbeing Budget’ and the Living Standards Framework are completely discredited by the experience of COVID-19.
“Government should consider total health and wellbeing when making decisions. We can’t afford the tunnel vision focus on COVID-19.
“It was my privilege to accept this petition today on behalf of the Breast Cancer Foundation and the 10,600 people who signed it. ACT will continue to fight for a well-rounded health system that focusses on more than just COVID-19.”