Of course National are politicising this! They have no solutions to this.
But the minister is obfuscating.
“The figures were only released after intervention from Parliament’s Speaker, with Health Minister Dr Ayesha Verrall refusing to release the data” and the fact is that “The data does not take into account those who have been transferred or have been re-employed”
New data shows that thousands of nurses have left the public health sector in just five years and the rate at which the essential workers are leaving is increasing, National’s Health spokesperson Dr Shane Reti says.
“Labour has repeatedly taken credit for funding extra nurses. However, they have refused to admit how many nurses have left – and now it is clear why.
“New data shows that almost 19,000 nurses have left over the last five years under Labour.
“What’s worse is that the number of nurses leaving has been steadily increase each year, jumping from 2,963 nurses in 2017 to 4,752 in 2022 – a 60 per cent increase.
“The figures were only released after intervention from Parliament’s Speaker, with Health Minister Dr Ayesha Verrall refusing to release the data.
“The health sector is in crisis and has been crying out for more workforce support, but the Labour Government took too long to act and refused to put overseas nurses on the straight -to-residency pathway, even when they had this worrying data showing how many nurses were leaving the profession.
“At a time when there is a global war for talent, New Zealand should be doing everything it can to be an attractive destination for essential workers. While countries like Australia and Canada were offering health workers easier immigration access, Labour refused to act.
“The Labour Government has failed the health sector and refused to take accountability for inaction. Sick and injured New Zealanders are going to be paying the price this winter.
“A National Government would have opened up New Zealand’s immigration settings for health workers more than a year ago. We also would not have wasted half a billion dollars on a bureaucratic health restructure in the middle of a global pandemic, and instead invested that money into our hardworking frontline.”
Note: The data does not take into account those who have been transferred or have been re-employed.
An independent economist is raising alarm bells over New Zealand’s declining attendance rate after a rocky start to the year with teachers’ strikes and weather disruptions seeing schools close regularly.
It comes after years of COVID-19 disruptions with attendance rates falling from 66.1 percent in term 4 of 2019 to just 50.6 percent in term 4 of 2022.
A leading economist says Aotearoa’s economy is “still in rehab” and is warning national house prices could fall up to a total of 25 percent.
HSBC’s chief economist Paul Bloxham says it is “tough times” for the New Zealand economy with inflation still too high.
“It’s [inflation] coming down, we think it’s passed its peak, but it’s still too high.”
Bloxham told AM the country has had to “jam on the breaks” to deal with inflation by hiking interest rates, and he expects rates to rise further.
With GDP falling in the fourth quarter of last year, Bloxham said that’s “probably the beginning of an economic recession”.
This is what people are living through in the capital city
Greater Wellington Regional Council has agreed to lift urban bus driver wages up to $30 per hour, which will take effect this weekend.
Wellington has struggled to get on top of a shortage of about 125 drivers.
People have been packed into buses like sardines, many have been left stranded on the side of the road, and some have resorted to taking Ubers or working from home.
Metlink has already previously topped up driver wages to a new base rate of $27 an hour to retain and attract drivers
A “chronic” shortage of bus and train drivers is causing commuter frustration across Wellington, and the region’s public transport overseers warn the problem could get worse.
More than 50 Wellington trains have not run in the past month because of a lack of staff, while a continued shortage of bus drivers saw 20 services cancelled across the city on Tuesday morning.
Metlink’s Twitter account shows more than 70 train services have been cancelled since January 14 in total. Other cancellations have been caused by things like mechanical and maintenance problems, power outages, medical emergencies, on-board incidents, and one “planning issue” when a driver was mistakenly left off the roster.
You can be sure that the above is only the tip of the iceberg. The reality is far worse