In Question Time in Parliament today both Premier Daniel Andrews and Labor Health Minister Jenny Mikakos refused to deny that they previously refused a $90 million plea from the Austin Hospital to upgrade outdated and dangerous equipment.
The archaic surgical instrument washers at the Austin Hospital should have been replaced years ago. However, Daniel Andrews’ cuts to health funding meant that the vital replacement did not happen.
As a result, contamination of surgical implements has put the lives of Victorian patients at risk.
Revelations that the Andrews Labor Government refused Austin Health’s application for funding to replace its oldest surgical washers as part of a $90 million rescue plan should anger all Victorians.
This comes at the same time hundreds of patients at the Austin Hospital have been operated on with potentially contaminated surgical equipment and hundreds more have had their surgery cancelled.
During an embarrassing Question Time for Health Minister Jenny Mikakos, the Minister also admitted that she has no idea about how many other critical pieces of hospital equipment have passed their use by date, potentially placing lives at risk.
Minister Mikakos admitted that Safer Care Victoria would be investigating potential faulty equipment in other Victorian hospitals “in the fullness of time.”
Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Health, Georgie Crozier:
“Daniel Andrews needs to come clean with Victorians about why he refused pleas from the Austin Hospital to upgrade vital surgical cleaning equipment, placing the lives of Victorian patients at risk.”
“It’s simply unacceptable that Labor’s Health Minister is not aware of how many other Victorian public hospitals also have outdated and dangerous equipment, putting at risk the health and safety of Victorians.”