Questions in Parliament

Kristie Johnston, Question to the Minister for Health – 19 June 2024

By June 19, 2024No Comments

Thank you Honourable Speaker

My question is to the Minister for Health.

Minister, I draw your attention to a report by the Auditor-General titled “Access to Oral Health Service” released yesterday.

This report painted a grim picture for Tasmanians needing general care. To quote the report:

“… the service is struggling to meet demand for non-urgent general care. Of concern is the number of adults waiting for general care, which remained around 15,000 for most of 2023, with a median wait time approaching 4 years.

Four years for dental care, Minister. That is a blight on our health system.

Minister, the Auditor-General found that poor oral health can affect a person’s ability to eat, speak, socialise, and engage in employment.

He stated that early intervention and preventative care, particularly for children, is important in helping reduce the likelihood of poor oral health later in life.

Minister, do you agree with the Auditor-General’s assertion that timely dental intervention can prevent chronic health problems from becoming established in later life, thus relieving the burden on our health infrastructure and services?

And do you understand that your Government’s under investment in dental care will ultimately cost our health system more?

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