THE federal government’s decision, announced last week, to reinstate funding it had cut from Victoria’s health system this financial year has been welcomed by the state government, the Victorian Healthcare Association and hospitals across Victoria, including South Gippsland.
The Victorian Healthcare Association said it welcomed the Prime Minister’s announcement that the government will return $107 million to Victorian hospitals.
The money was originally taken out of hospital budgets, following a decision last October to reduce Victoria’s federal health funding based on changes to population estimates. The federal government has said it will reinstate the funding – but will pass it directly to Local Hospital Networks rather than to the Victorian Coalition Government.
“This announcement is great news for Victorian hospitals and the communities they serve,” VHA Chief Executive Trevor Carr said.
CEO of South Gippsland Hospital Peter Rushen said he was delighted with the Prime Minister’s announcement.
Mr Rushen said the hospital had managed to absorb the cuts in the short term because of its strong financial position, but the board had been concerned about the longer term impact.
“The board had reviewed the funding cuts and had determined not to alter the level of service offered by the hospital, but we’re delighted to have the money returned to us,” he said. “This means we can proceed with our original budget strategy and continue to provide a broad range of services at South Gippsland Hospital.”