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Tags: Gawler / Light Electorate


  • By Light Electoral Office
  • Apr 02, 2019

Locals will lose a trusted government run pathology service if the Liberals privatise Pathology SA.


The local community could lose the SA Pathology service based at the Gawler Health Service if it is privatised by the Marshall Liberal Government.


Local Member of Parliament, Mr Tony Piccolo, said SA Pathology is at risk of being privatised by the Marshall Liberal Government if the service doesn’t deliver $105 million in cuts over three years with the first $25 million instalment due from 1 July this year.


Mr Piccolo said the Marshall Liberal Government has made it very clear that if the cuts are not made they will ‘outsource’ the services provided by SA Pathology.


“The proposed cuts are already having an adverse effect on services with clinicians reporting delays in tests being processed,” Mr Piccolo said.


“These delays will place the health of South Australians at unreasonable risk.


“SA Pathology is currently responsible for almost all the State’s pathologist training, so the privatisation of this service will substantially impact training and research in South Australia.


“Without SA Pathology we risk losing jobs interstate.”


Mr Piccolo said private pathology companies in South Australia don’t have the capacity to do complex work and would likely be reticent to accept it because it doesn’t turn a profit
The majority of complex work is performed in South Australia by SA Pathology.


“If SA Pathology is privatised this important, complex work will go interstate or overseas – with delays to patients’ treatment and increased risk of errors during the transfer of samples,” Mr Piccolo warned.

“SA Pathology undertakes lots of important work – like food testing and the prevention of disease outbreaks – that won’t be taken up by the private sector.”


Mr Piccolo said rural and remote communities will be most heavily affected, if SA Pathology is privatised.
“Private providers don’t operate in regional areas, so regional patients will face substantial delays to testing,” Mr Piccolo said.


“If SA Pathology is sold to an existing private pathology provider, it will also reduce competition in the market and result in higher prices for tests.


“Patients will be the loser from a privatised SA Pathology service.


“But the Marshall Liberal Government is subjecting the service to a death by a
thousand cuts over the next few years, providing adequate justification for the
Government’s privatisation agenda.”



Australian Medical Association (South Australia) Letter to Rural MPs: 

"What will privatising SA Pathology mean in your electorate?


Today I will be providing evidence to the Legislative Council and the Select Committee on Matters related to SA Pathology.


Treasurer Lucas’ plan to squeeze $25 million in savings from SA Pathology by 2019-20 or privatise the service is false economy.


The odds are stacked against SA Pathology reaching the government’s $25 million target and the savings target of $45 million by 2022, opening the door for the service to be privatised.


Pathology is the unsung hero of our health system, providing vital information for diagnosis and treatment.


SA Pathology does almost all pathology training, undertakes most pathology research, and our 10 rural pathology centres depend on it for accreditation.
If SA Pathology is privatised, what will it mean for your electorate?
  • Will patients in your area be able to receive swift diagnosis and treatment of their condition or will they be forced to wait for tests sent interstate?
  • Will your citizens lose local pathology collection centres and be forced to travel further afield?
  • Will citizens in your electorate face rising costs for pathology tests?


The Australian Medical Association (South Australia) urges you to consider the consequences of privatising SA Pathology in your electorate.

Yours sincerely,
A/Prof William Tam


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