Health care cost alarm bell

Health Minister Lawrence Springborg (centre) with chemotherapy patient Shirley Carlile, and Member for Noosa Glen Elmes at Noosa Hospital.
Health Minister Lawrence Springborg (centre) with chemotherapy patient Shirley Carlile, and Member for Noosa Glen Elmes at Noosa Hospital. GEOFF POTTER

NOOSA may be one of the keys to helping cure the ravenous fiscal beast that is the state health budget, according to Health Minister Lawrence Springborg.

Mr Springborg revealed during a visit to the Noosaville hospital that at the current rate of spending increases, the entire state budget would be devoted to the health sector by 2030.

"We've got a lot of dilemmas facing Queensland Health, but no one wants us to keep on doing the same old thing we've been doing for years and years and years - just throwing money at things and going over budget," the minister said during last Tuesday's Noosa tour with local MP Glen Elmes, the hospital board and chief executive.

"It's an interesting statistic," Mr Springborg said.

"If we keep spending on Queensland Health at the rate we're going, by 2030 Queensland Health will consume the entire state budget. Every single bit of it, every single last cent ... it's unsustainable.

"The private sector gives us a really good insight into how we should be looking at running health care as well, because they're very, very efficient and this is where these partnerships are really good," Mr Springborg said.

He said that the Noosa Hospital - that is the public and private hospital run by not-for-profit

group Ramsay Health Care, "absolutely" was a key to delivering a better healthcare bang for each buck.

"I see these public/private partnerships as being very, very important to deliver efficient health services in local communities and this is a classic example of it," Mr Springborg said.

"I wish money grew on trees. We've had to deal with the health payroll debacle, a $150 million hole is blown in this year's budget, which is an enormous hole.

"What we're saying now is that all of our health services will have an increase in budget, including the Sunshine Coast, but what we're saying is that the days of budget over-runs are over."

The minister said the Coast's hospitals will get their money and then hospital boards will have to "cut the cloth to suit" by way of provision of health services.

"Mr and Mrs Sunshine Coast Average, they have to run within a budget, every small businessman has to run within a budget, this hospital's got to run within a budget, Queensland Health's got to run within a budget.

"The Noosa board will get a budget, it will be up to them how they apply services. On the Coast here they might decide to buy more services from the not-for-profit or private sector that will be a matter for them."

Noosa Hospital CEO Oliver Steele said the visit was a great opportunity to talk about Ramsay's desire to secure a 10 to 15-year health service contract extension on the existing arrangement.

"The health minister understands we're keen to get a longer lease for the long-term future of Ramsay Health Care," Mr Steele said.

Mr Steele said demands on the Noosa emergency department were growing at 10% annually and Ramsay needed future security to plan ahead.

Topics:  budget health costs lawrence springborg noosa politics

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Making an arty stand for turtles

GREEN ART: Sunshine Beach State School students with their art that raises awareness of the impact our rubbish has on local sea creatures.

Enviro art makes a stand against rubbish

Challenge to pool erosion zone ban

The highlighted property at Peregian Beach that has led to a legal challenge to Noosa Council.

Court challenge to council pool refusal at Peregian Beach

Mixed shops 'the way ahead'

Acres./ Noosaville.
Photo Geoff Potter / Noosa News

Council sees mixed use as retailing future

Local Partners

Azealia Banks won't take legal action against Russell Crowe

Rapper Azealia Banks

Rapper drops legal action against Russell Crowe

Oriana Choir dazzles audiences throughout Europe

GRAND STAGE: Sunshine Coast Oriana Choir at Esztergom Basilica, the seat of the Catholic Church in Hungary and third largest cathedral in Europe after St Peters in Rome and St Pauls in London.

People travelled far and wide to hear the choir

Brad Pitt meets with his kids amid divorce proceedings

Actor Brad Pitt

Brad Pitt has met up with his oldest son Maddox

Pictures of Taylor Swift allegedly being groped are sealed

They could "complicate jury selection".

Bruce Springsteen finds therapy useful

Singer Bruce Springsteen

Singer encourages others to seek help

Kerry Washington wants one more child

Kerry Washington recently gave birth to her second child

Kerry has only just become a new mum again

Hit songwriter's Noosa mansion on market

SPECIAL PLACE: The Cintamani estate is going to tender, marketed by Tom Offermann Real Estate.

Is this Queensland's best property?

Kiwi siblings snap up Dotcom mansion for $32.5m

The new toy company owners of the Coatesville mansion want replace any controversy with positivity and fun. Photo / Barfoot and Thompson

The trio paid $32.5 million for the property in June

New $200 million development will create 580 jobs

Cassie And Josh with baby Alfie and daughter Andee. They have bought at new Lennox Head development Epiq.

Majority of new positions will be given to Northern Rivers locals

Give me shelter - but perhaps not in this park

Some regular users of Cotton Tree Park have bagged the new shelter sheds, saying the roofs are too high to provide adequate protection from the sun and rain.

Users say no cover in new shelters

Cherrabah's mega resort plans axed

PLANS for a massive development at Cherrabah have been scrapped.

What our mayor thinks of the new draft SEQPlan

The plan to use the innovative technology as part of the new Maroochydore CBD was cemented on site today when Mayor Mark Jamieson and Envac Asia Region president Chun Yong Ha formally signed the contract for the $20 million underground waste collection system.

New plan accommodates Sunshine Coast Council's vision for growth.