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A planned protest over health on Tuesday is aimed in the wrong direction.

The Labour Party plans to protest outside my office for the assessments the Otago and Southland DHBs are making in terms of home help.  This seems to be a pointless exercise, as these changes are not a Government directive, but rather done from a management perspective at the DHB.  The Labour Party should be protesting to the District Health Board, but I suppose my office is closer to Wachner Place.

The individual assessments of home help services, whilst not requested by the Government, seemed to be a usual activity.

It does make sense to assess what levels people are receiving and to adjust accordingly.  After a similar assessment in Canterbury, a lot more people began to receive home help assistance.  Any social service should periodically re-assess levels of need.

The Minister of Health, Tony Ryall, has been assured by all the district health boards involved that no one will be unsafe or unable to stay in their home as a result of these changes.

Anyone who believes they have not been treated fairly as a result of an assessment is welcome to contact my office with the details, and I will let the Minister know.

I won’t be meeting the protest on Tuesday as I have left for Health select committee meetings in Sydney and Canberra.

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Authorised by Eric Roy, 97 Dee St, Invercargill

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