Letters / Minister rejects Health link claim

ON March 23 I was pleased to announce, with Minister Rattenbury, that the ACT Health directorate would become two organisations later in 2018, with one organisation responsible for clinical operations and a second responsible for strategic policy and planning.

In response to Michael Moore’s column (CN, March 27), I welcome and value his perspective on the history of ACT Health. However, I would like to be clear that the ACT Health organisational change and the auditor-general’s performance audit are unrelated.

I reject the suggestion that such a significant announcement about a directorate restructure was made to coincide with an announcement by the auditor-general. The auditor-general had already foreshadowed a performance audit into issues relating to ACT Health data. Indeed, this was announced in June, 2017. I ordered a system-wide review into ACT Health data issues and I look forward to sharing the outcomes of that review soon.

Of course ACT Health will co-operate fully with the auditor general’s performance audit. We respect the integrity of this independent process, as well as the opportunity to respond to findings and implement recommendations at its conclusion.

The decision to separate ACT Health is good policy. It will align us with all other jurisdictions and help us meet the health needs of our growing community. I am very optimistic about the future of health care delivery in Canberra and I look forward to engaging with the Canberra community on this important work.

Thank you for the opportunity to clarify this issue.

Meegan Fitzharris, Minister for Health and Wellbeing

Beyond the pale

Re “Barr only interested in himself” (CN letters, April 5).

Say what you like about Chief Minister Andrew Barr, but dragging his government’s financial support of the marriage equality vote into your argument goes beyond the pale.

The marriage vote was about extending human rights to all of society and that should never be again used in a political argument; the LGBTQI community have suffered enough.

The ACT’s record-breaking affirmative vote was proof that the people were on Barr’s side on this particular issue.

Jon Stock, Curtin

Concerned about tram trees


I AM concerned that the valuable, vulnerable new trees along the tram track are being planted in square holes.

I fear that they are being popped into drilled round holes in the

battered earth once the heavy machinery of the Light Rail

project has thundered on.

Also, given consideration to the drought conditions, I hope that

they are provided with appropriate moisture.

Suzanne Mitchell, via email

Not the only ‘ant’

IN the “CityNews” crossword of March 29, the 7 across clue says: “Name a word that is the only one in the English language that ends in ‘ant’.” What about cant and cormorant, two that I know just off the top of my head?

Martin Barnett, via email

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