Health Service wasting $1.9 million: Opposition
NORTH Coast Area Health Service is wasting $1.9 million a year paying the wages of staff members who no longer hold positions with the service, according to the Opposition.
That's an estimate from the Opposition for how much the North Coast Area Health Service is costing taxpayers, with 24 staff members classified as 'displaced' or 'unattached' as at May 2008.
The Opposition claims the staff members have been removed from positions they were previously in yet are still receiving full pay, despite the State Health portfolio being $300 million over budget.
Shadow Minister for Health, Jillian Skinner, said unattached staff are costing taxpayers across the State $20.8 million a year, based on the figure of 260 staff state-wide earning an estimated $80,000 each.
"This is $20 million that should be going towards vital hospital upgrades," Ms Skinner said.
"These bureaucrats sit around, using up valuable resources, while the government says there's not enough money for hospital upgrades.
"Patients who continue to wait for their operations would be outraged this money is being spent on bureaucrats."
But NSW Minister for Health, John Della Bosca, said displaced personnel in the health system are performing "meaningful work" for Area Health Services.