Concern at rural health cuts

Sharon Wards
Sharon Wards

Dannevirke's Community Board will send a letter to the Mid Central District Health Board expressing its deep concern at the recent cut in the funding for a cancer nurse who serves 400 patients in the Tararua.

At its monthly meeting on Tuesday June 6 Dannevirke Community Board member Terry Hynes said he was very disappointed no action eventuated from the monthly meeting of the MidCentral District Health Board in the Tararua District Council Chambers recently.

At that meeting Chief Executive of the Tararua Health Group Sharon Wards told a packed Council Chamber the decision of MidCentral Health to pull the contract for a cancer nurse, despite an increase in the budget of $17 million, makes it extremely difficult to meet the needs of her 400 cancer patients.

She said it was one of the toughest times in her 20 years as a health professional in our town.

There were other concerns discussed at the MidCentral Health meeting related to rural health funding, including support for drug and alcohol patients.

The Community Board resolved to communicate with the District Health Board to highlight its concerns.

These included additional issues of mental health and renal dialysis treatment.

"Just because people chose to live in rural areas doesn't mean they should go without basic health services," said Chairman Ross Macdonald.

Funds granted

The Dannevirke Community Board granted $500 to the SPCA OP Shop to help it dispose of unwanted items, $472 to Sport Manawatu to help fund hireage of the sports centre for spring basketball and $100 to Dannevirke Combined Indoor Bowls for the IDEA Indoor Bowls Tournament.

Special requests from the Tararua District Council to fund two athletes representing New Zealand overseas because its fund was exhausted, were agreed to by the Community Board. Xzavia Mason received $500 to play basketball in the NZ Under 16 team and Anne Cairns $500 to attend the IVF Va'a World Distance Championships as part of the NZ Open Women's team in Waka Ama.

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