South West Sydney has some of the busiest hospitals in NSW.
Two of them, Campbelltown and Liverpool, have been earmarked for major upgrades to help the local health service cope with an impending population boom in the region over the next 20 years.
However the Labor opposition says an analysis of the State Government budget papers shows that patients at Campbelltown and Liverpool hospitals will have to wait longer for their upgrades than the SCG Trust and the NRL will have to wait for their new $730 million stadium at Moore Park.
And Campbelltown and Liverpool aren’t the only busy NSW hospitals to be affected in this way.
Patients at Nepean, Westmead, Tweed and Randwick, will also have to wait years before the upgrades are achieved.
Labor says the Berejiklian Liberal Government’s wrong priorities have been exposed again with the budget papers showing that a new stadium at Moore Park will be delivered years before the upgrades to some of the busiest hospitals in the state.
A new stadium will be completed by early 2022, at least one year ahead of any of the projected hospital upgrades.
Patients at Campbelltown and Liverpool will have to wait until 2024 and 2026 before the upgrades are completed.
Labor says that while the Liberals race ahead with the demolition of a stadium that will supposedly be up and running by 2022 costing $730 million, last year the Berejiklian Government made paltry down payments on hospitals.
Just $5 million was allocated to Campbelltown Hospital last financial year, $10 million to Tweed Hospital and $25 million to Maitland Hospital.
“In the Liberal Government’s eyes people just don’t count,’’ says NSW Opposition Leader Michael Daley.
“The Premier is putting the building of a private palace paid for by the taxpayer ahead of building hospitals.
“It beggars belief that she can put her stadiums before people’s health.
“Daley Labor will always put hospitals before stadiums and people before profits.”
Labor’s health spokesman Minister Walt Secord said Liverpool and Westmead hospitals have the dubious distinction of NSW’s longest waits for elective surgery and in emergency departments.
“Under the Liberals the hospital system lurches from crisis to crisis,’’ he said.
“Patients will have to wait longer for much-needed upgrades than a stadium in Sydney’s eastern suburbs.”