New Zealand’s health system is in crisis. Emergency departments are overflowing, patients languish on waitlists, and it’s harder than ever to get seen by a doctor. Health and medical professionals are doing their best to provide Kiwis the care they need when they need it, but they’re overworked and understaffed. The health crisis is a workforce crisis.

Instead of addressing these underlying problems, the Government has been focused on burning billions of dollars shuffling deck chairs, restructuring, and creating the divisive and ineffective Māori Health Authority. It is fixated on the Treaty and failing to ask basic questions like ‘will this latest idea get better treatment, faster, for more patients?’

Statistics show that every district in New Zealand has been at ‘red’ for the past 12 months for ‘patients waiting longer than the required time frame for their first specialist appointment’ and ‘patients given a commitment to treatment but not treated within the required time frame’.

New Zealand’s population is ageing and nearly half of all GPs plan to retire in the next 10 years. The situation is a ticking timebomb if fundamental problems with the health system are not addressed.

Fortunately, ACT has a plan to grow the health workforce and cut red tape to so that Kiwis can access the healthcare they need, when they need it.

ACT’s plan will

  • Create an easier pathway for doctors trained in comparable overseas jurisdictions to practise in New Zealand. Currently, even a top Harvard doctor would have to be supervised for 6-18 months before being allowed to independently practise.

  • Increase GP funding by 13%, the equivalent of 2.5 million GP visits per year.

  • Enable physician assistants to take on less complex tasks to take pressure off GPs

  • Give the Minister of Health the ability to override unnecessary red tape and bureaucracy

  • Increase the resilience of the healthcare system with intelligent forecasting of future requirements, improving upon current simplistic models.

ACT has a vision of a public healthcare system focussed on efficient and effective spending in order to attain the best health outcomes for all Kiwis.

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