The NSW Government continues to drag their feet in the construction of the new Maitland Hospital. Only a meagre $5 million was contributed to building the $450 million project in the 2017-18 Budget. The people of Maitland are suffering from long waiting lists and some have to travel hours just to get an appointment with a specialist. The Budget papers state that the new hospital will not be finished until 2024 . This is an unacceptable timeline and without upgrades to the existing Maitland Hospital, the people of Maitland will continue to suffer as a result of this Government’s meanness and incompetence. The Government continues to obfuscate and still has not confirmed whether or not this hospital will be built and operated publically or whether it will be run by a private company for profit. The people of Maitland are sick and tired of the Government’s political games with this hospital. They want their new hospital to be public and they want it to be built now. It’s now been 2,315 days since the government first promised our new Maitland Hospital and our local community is still waiting for them to stop playing politics and commence construction. In the meantime, Maitland’s population has grown by nearly 10,000 people. The lack of detail around services and bed numbers shows more smoke and mirrors from a Government which has continually over-promised and under-delivered, especially in Maitland. Quotes Attributable to Member for Maitland Ms Jenny Aitchison MP “It has been over 6 years since the Government announced it would build this hospital. The Premier and Treasurer have let down the Maitland community.” “So this means, no new hospital until 2024 – 13 years since it was first promised by this Government.” “While the Treasurer boasts about surpluses gained from selling off NSW, he is refusing to fund a lifesaving new hospital for the Lower Hunter community.” “I’m extremely disappointed with the paltry $5 million that the Government has committed today.” “This Budget contains no new money for the existing Maitland Hospital to help alleviate emergency ward pressures, under staffing issues and address the long wait lists that patients are experiencing.” [1] https://www.budget.nsw.gov.au/sites/default/files/budget-2017-06/2017-18%20Budget%20Paper%20No.%202%20-%20Infrastructure%20Statement.pdf (Page 94 of Infrastructure Statement) [2] Ibid [3] http://www.abc.net.au/news/2011-02-17/nsw-opposition-promises-new-maitland-hospital/1946682

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