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LNP Profits from Ebola? « MikeFitz with overflow bit set…

LNP Profits from Ebola?

Sat 8 Nov 2014

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A Facebook update from my wife, Maureen Fitzsimon, a GP. Reproduced here because it deserves a wider audience…

“Now I’m worried. The very clinically inexperienced, (as I have seen about 50 times the number of patients he has), Michael Wooldridge, is on the board of Aspen - the group contracted, without any tendering, to combat Ebola in West Africa.

“He was the (Howard government) Liberal Minister who drastically cut medical school intakes to Australians. We consequently had a drastic doctor shortage, necessitating importing countless thousands of overseas doctors.

“He was on the board of Prime Trust retirement fund. We lost a good part of our superannuation when $550 million was lost by investors, due to the board’s mismanagement. What a great choice to fight Ebola!”

It turns out Michael Wooldridge is also on the board of the Waubra Foundation, the mob of crackpots who assert that wind farms cause illness. Medical expertise indeed.

Electoral records reveal that Aspen donated $11,000 to the Queensland LNP last year.

Call me a cynic, but it appears to me that Australia’s response to the Ebola crisis was held up until, in true LNP style, a way could be found for someone’s mate to make a buck out of this misery.

3 Responses to “LNP Profits from Ebola?”

  1. Chris Egginton Says:

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    Par for the course with the LNP. The child care debacles were full of LNP members passing profits to each other. It’s scary to see such a lack of morality that they should be profiting from misery and using well meaning volunteers to do it for them

  2. John HALY Says:

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    So how skilled up is this private sector company which has Michael Wooldridge former Health Minister in the Howard government as a Director? It would seem from this article Woodridge’s company is not a choice made for reasons of competence. The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade awarded the contract to Aspen Medical (note the term “awarded the contract”). Most of the people running the 100 bed hospital managed by Aspens will not be Australians. The Outsourcing company Aspen expects workers would be hired locally with possibly some “international” Aid worked (i.e. Australians - maybe!!} The close to 350 Australians who have already volunteered to deploy are more likely to be turned away as Aspen said maybe 24 to 25 people. SO how do Aspen rate? If you were to listen to Peter Dutton - “So I think this will deliver a significant local outcome for them for which I think they’ll be very grateful.”. If you were to listen to they who have been dealing with the Ebola crisis such as Medecins Sans Frontieres and the Red Cross (who have been very cross with Australia), they have expressed concerns about their lack of experience in the field. Training and experience are vital and Aspen have admitted they don’t have it yet.

    So why this company and were there better alternatives? Were you aware there is an Australian Medical Assistance Team (AUSMAT) who have vaccinated case workers, who are, used to the climate, experienced and fully trained to care for Ebola patients, none of whom have been asked to assist? Why? They are public health associations not private Sector. Health Minister Peter Dutton in true-blue fact-free ideological positioning claimed they weren’t ready. But Health Department secretary Martin Bowles stated otherwise, outlining their training at a Senate Estimates Committee. He retorted, “I want to make very, very clear the states and the territories have been training staff and running exercises at designated hospitals for a while now.” …”The systems have been tested, obviously, with the experience around the nurse in the Cairns example where that worked,” he said. Following suit ideologically, (because Public health associations don’t count) our Prime Minister said we don’t have any Australian health professionals who have been skilled up with the appropriate knowledge to manage an epidemic. Australian Medical Association president Professor Brian Owler said the Chief Medical Officer’s comments showed Australia was “asleep at the wheel” as far as Ebola was concerned.

    AUSMAT staff say they are ready now. Ebola is spreading because there is a lack of qualified medical staff in the affected countries, so the question has to be asked, who are these local staff Aspen will be able to employ and how are they more qualified as applicants? Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) being donned and doffed to protect Healthcare workers when managing Ebola cases have generated recently revised procedures. Why? Because failures in implementing the old procedures in the midst of an ongoing epidemic have proven problematic. Inadequate guidelines for or use of PPEs are believed to be responsible for Nurses and health workers contracting Ebola.

    SO why go with Aspen? The Ideological agenda that says that Private Medical is “better” despite the fact they are less well equipped, trained or prepared. Let’s not even talk about the obvious connection with Michael Wooldridge as this has already been raised in the article above. There has been criticism that Aspen are unlikely to make good use of NGOs experienced in the field and make excessive used of strained local resources. So is this yet another example of intransigent compliance to the Government regressive Idealogical driven agenda to favour private sector support over logic and science? Is the choice of Canberra-based healthcare provider Aspen Medical being provided with a private contract to the tune of $20 Million to combat the Ebola outbreak in West Africa the best use of our resources? Is this simply “another job for the boys”?

    What will be the end result? Really? You have to ask?

  3. Neil Cotter Says:

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    Yet another reason why we need a federal anti-corruption body.

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