It’s the final day of the Yes We Care roadshow. We’ve travelled over 6000km from Bluff all the way up to Cape Reinga. We crossed from coast to coast on both our beautiful islands and stopped in over 38 locations along the way. It’s been an eye-opening journey, as we’ve talked to people from all walks of life; those who provide care, and those who seek it. Yet no matter what role people have been in, the themes have been the same; there’s not enough staff or funding.
I started this roadshow as one of the 9 in 10 people who work in health, who believe we don’t have the staffing, or resources to provide the healthcare kiwi’s need, when they need it. The stories I’ve heard from people have been shocking. From people waiting years to get on official waiting lists for surgery; where the date keeps getting pushed back, or the bar continually raised in order to meet requirements, to people conducting surgery on themselves in exasperation. The unmet need in this country is staggering.
Community groups around the country are struggling to find the funding to fill the gaps left in our health service. These are diverse groups that work in areas such as Autism spectrum support, post-natal depression, cancer treatment, and rare disorders just to name a few. Lack of funding is negatively impacting on these communities around the country. Some core services that you would hope would be adequately funded such as ambulance services, only have funding to provide single crewed ambulances, putting patients and staff at risk.
As we finished setting up at Cape Reinga and watched the two seas collide at sunset. I was struck by how far we’ve travelled, yet the stories we’ve collected have only just started to scratch the surface of unmet need in this country. The roadshow itself may have come to an end, but the journey continues.
A massive thanks to all of you for joining us on the road, I know Steave really appreciated the support. It’s an election year and we have an opportunity to make some real difference in people’s lives. You can join our campaign to ensure all political parties commit to restoring underfunding and ensure it keeps up with an ageing and growing population. YesWeCare.nz