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  • Renee Cluff

    Email Renee Cluff

    Election Campaign day 7: Gloves off over Cairns Health Service funding

    A battle has erupted between the LNP and ALP candidates for Leichhardt over federal funding for the Cairns and Hinterland Hospital and Health Service.

    The ALP’s Elida Faith claims the LNP is planning post-election health cuts in order to slash spending by $40-billion a year to fund tax plans.

    “We have already seen $7.2 million cut from our Cairns Hospital,” she said.

    “With $40 billion a year of cuts on the horizon, how much of that is coming out of our hospital?

    “Warren Entsch and Scott Morrison must come clean with Far North Queenslanders and detail what post-election health cuts they are plotting in order to pay for their tax handouts to the top end of town.

    “The Cairns Hospital is already experiencing significantly high levels of demand and simply cannot afford any further LNP cuts. 

    “Labor has committed to restoring the LNP’s cuts to hospitals and will also invest $15 million in upgrading the emergency department.” 

    Incumbent MP, the LNP’s Warren Entsch, has reacted angrily to the comments, claiming it’s Ms Faith who needs to come clean.

    “She is running her campaign based on a lie and she needs to be called out on it.

    “Commonwealth funding for the Cairns and Hinterland Hospital and Health Service has increased from $127 million when Labor left office to more than $242 million last financial year," he said.

    “I challenge the local Labor candidate to show Far North Queenslanders exactly where in the official budget papers these so-called cuts are because they simply do not exist.

    “Commonwealth funding for the Cairns and Hinterland Hospital and Health Service will continue to grow to $378.6 million by 2025.”