Dark Daily Commentary: Treat lab testing as a commodity and risk disrupting the entire healthcare system
Once again, the pathology profession is seeing the consequences of the “penny wise-pound foolish” philosophy relentlessly pursued by government health bureaucrats. This time it involves the Auckland District Health Boards in New Zealand. Having signed a cut-rate, back room deal back in 2006 to save about NZ$15 million per year on lab testing (against an annual healthcare budget in the region of more than NZ$2.5 billion), these health officials are reaping a harvest of voluminous problems and deficiencies in the community because of problems with their new monopoly laboratory testing provider.
Many regular Dark Daily readers know that, ever since Labtests began its contract as the exclusive provider of pathology services and lab testing to the greater Auckland region late this summer, there has been chaos across the healthcare system. Labtests is a new business division of Healthscope Limited, (SYD:HSP) a public company based in Melbourne, Australia. See Dark Daily e-briefing “Long-Awaited Lab Contract Transition in New Zealand Happens Next Monday”.