A Shorten Labor Government will upgrade mental health facilities, fund the purchase of a new Careflight helicopter for Darwin Hospital, and fund major improvements to remote health services as part of an $92 million Northern Territory health package.
Labor wants all Territorians to have access to the best possible health care, whether they live in downtown Darwin or a remote outback community.
That’s why we will spend $10 million on a second Careflight helicopter for the Territory.
The NT has just one medical rescue helicopter for the whole Territory, and it is offline 30 per cent of the time for maintenance. A second aircraft will give the Territory almost total coverage and save lives in Darwin and beyond.
Labor will also invest $15 million to boost the number of mental health inpatient beds in Darwin.
Mental ill health rates in the NT are high, with suicide rates twice the national average, linked to high rates of homelessness and substance abuse.
At the moment the only inpatient Mental Health Unit in the Top End is a 31-bed unit on the Royal Darwin Hospital campus. This unit is often running at full capacity, meaning mental health patients often have to be treated in the hospital emergency department or other less appropriate facilities.
That means Territorians are not getting the quality care they need.
Labor will tackle this problem by building a new six-to-eight-bed stand-alone youth inpatient facility on the Royal Darwin Hospital site and refurbish the current unit to increase the number of adult beds.
Labor will also:
- Provide new Remote Point of Care Pathology Testing machines in 20 remote locations, to allow for sepsis testing and white cell count monitoring ($500,000).
- Buy a new BreastScreen Mammography System for Palmerston Hospital ($240,000).
- Upgrade the following Aboriginal Medical Services: Mutijuli Health Service ($7.5 million), Mpwelarre Health Service ($1 million), Danila Dilba ($1.5 million), and Galiwin’ku ($1 million).
- Replace or upgrade four NT Government clinics: Borroloola ($8.5 million), Gunbalanya ($8.5 million) and Gapuwiyak ($4.25 million), and Ramingining Health Service ($5 million).
- Upgrade Tennant Creek Hospital ($3 million).
- Match a commitment to upgrade Alice Springs Hospital ($25.7 million).
Labor can pay for better hospitals and health services because we will make multinationals pay their fair share and close tax loopholes used by the top end of town.
Scott Morrison is spending billions on handouts to the top end of town while cutting money from local hospitals.
As treasurer, Scott Morrison cut funding from health while trying to give an $80 billion tax handout to big business, including $17 billion to the big banks.
And Mr Morrison will cut even more money from hospitals if the Liberals win the election.
This election will be a choice between proper funding to improve the Territory’s hospital and health services under Labor, or tax cuts for the top end of town under the Liberals.
After six years of Liberal cuts and chaos, our united Labor team is ready.