Politicians, sector leaders gather for primary health care summit

Sector news
2 June 2017

Prepare for fireworks as representatives from major political parties and leaders in the primary health care sector discuss critical issues in the sector at the General Practice Leaders Forum’s (GPLF) 2017 Primary Health Care Summit on Wednesday 7 June in Wellington. 

Confirmed panellists included Julie-Anne Genter MP (Greens), Dr David Clark MP (Labour), Ria Bond MP (NZ First) and Simon O’Connor MP (National).
Veteran political journalist Linda Clark will moderate the discussion.

GPLF is composed of key organisations in the sector including The Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners (the College), New Zealand Medical Association (NZMA), Rural General Practice Network (RGPN), General practice New Zealand (GPNZ), New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO), Practice Managers and Administrators Association of New Zealand (PMAANZ), and Primary Health Alliance (PHA).

GPLF Chair and the College President Dr Tim Malloy said the summit provides an opportunity for sector leaders to engage with political leaders and highlight the need to act on pressing issues faced by the sector. 

“We want to know what they will do to solve the problems we are facing. How will they make GP visits affordable for low income, high needs patients? What are their plans to avert the looming GP shortage? These are questions that will need to answered,” Dr Malloy said. 

Dr Malloy said it was disheartening that despite the warning the sector has been giving to the government on the challenges in the primary care sector, there were no obvious provisions in the recent budget announcement to address those issues. 

“We are hoping that by opening the lines of communication with our political leaders, we can encourage them to act soon to ensure that we will have enough GPs across the country and that all New Zealanders can afford to visit their GP,” said Dr Malloy.

The by-invitation event will be broadcast live via Facebook live on the College of GPs Facebook page.