Mary Wooldridge MP

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Labor's Heart Hospital Debacle

Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Parliamentary Statement

Ms WOOLDRIDGE (Eastern Metropolitan) — What a debacle Labor's heart hospital and its management of it has become. In November 2014 Daniel Andrews promised Victorians that his government would deliver a new standalone 195-bed heart hospital, with the state contributing $150 million of the $300 million to $350 million cost. Now in 2017, this flailing government has failed to secure the necessary funding to deliver this Daniel Andrews idea that copied and replicated a model that the coalition had put forward for a $120 million dedicated heart hospital but to be co-located with the Monash Medical Centre. What we are finding is that investors and co-investors are walking away from this project that is going to cost, I believe, at least $450 million.

Daniel Andrews is now trying to blame the federal government for his own funding shortfall. The state Treasurer has described this as an election commitment 'that we can't deliver'. They did not even mention federal funding for this project until 18 months after Daniel Andrews's original promise. Two and a half years on, the Minister for Health had not even written to the federal government asking for funding. It was not until she was shamed at a Public Accounts and Estimates Committee hearing in March this year when asked if she had written to the federal government, that a letter was then subsequently sent, two weeks later. This is just another example of Daniel Andrews making a promise and expecting someone else to pay for it. This is an absolute debacle. It has been poorly managed, and Daniel Andrews should hang his head in shame.

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