Duncan Garner: Pharmac is an indictment on our health system

Opinion 11/04/2019

Next week, Easter Friday actually, "Good Friday" they call it, but it's not that "good" for a New Zealand family that will be sent packing from the very country they live in, and love.

They can't stay any longer because staying in New Zealand will be bad for Claudine's health. Claudine is a 42-year-old mum. She has advanced breast cancer and her country can't help. 

Isn't it damning? Isn't it shameful?

What an indictment on our health system, Pharmac and the Government's approach, and aren't you embarrassed? 

This is now the reality for a whole group of women suffering this terminal disease - it looks like we have given up on them.

Not only did Labour MPs and one New Zealand First MP block an inquiry into Pharmac, but Health Minister David Clark wouldn't even pick up the damn phone to ask when a decision might be made on crucial drugs that keep these women alive longer. Where's the care and compassion?

Clark looked cold, out of touch, and a possum in the headlights.

Just act with kindness and as a good human being and those principles should guide you, David.

You're bogged down in Colemanitis. I'm referring to Jonathan Coleman, the previous minister who was too scared to do anything, so did nothing.

The Johnstones and their five kids head to Hunter Valley next week to live. To keep Mum alive for as long as possible.

Good luck to them but, on behalf of your country, I'm sorry we've let you down.

Duncan Garner is host of The AM Show.