Mersey hospital takeover by the Australian government

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Ever since the Federal Government stepped in to take over funding of the Mersey hospital in Devonport, Tasmania, the state government and some federal MPs have criticised this act as a stunt in the prelude to the federal election to be called by November.

But Prime Minister John Howard has said the act was only to safeguard the facilities of the hospital from being downgraded by the Tasmanian government, in giving an extra AUD$45 million.

The Victorian government has slammed the takeover as only intended to win votes for the marginal seat of Braddon, and that a takeover of the 600 hospitals is unrealistic as they would soon turn into a farcical state.

Senator Bob Brown of the greens for Tasmania has said the action was only a vote buying ploy and that there was no consultation with medical personnel or plan on how to spend the money.