No one will convince me that a federal government of Tasmania’s Mersey Hospital before it really wanted to is in any way a move it makes willingly.
Clearly, as Tony Abbott states, “We don’t want to go to the election with unfinished business if we can help it, and this certainly is a very important piece of policy innovation.” this is unfinished business which leaves the government dangerously exposed to ridicule from Labor. I fail to see, though, that taking over one regional hospital which the Tasmanian state government had deemed uneconomical in terms of need as advised by the regional health management committee, can be called an important piece of policy innovation. Basically, it’s a waste of taxpayers money for the sake of appearing populist.
What about the other 749 state-run public hospitals throughout Australia? If Mersey is a prime example, surely there’s justification to takeover the running of all state-run public hospitals. I’d suggest that this execution of a Heads of Agreement is simply another indicator that the much awaited election is just around the corner.