As you may have heard, the Director-General and the Minister promised changes to the contracts today.
The Director-General met with the Keep Our Doctors taskforce last night to inform us of the decision, while at the very same time the Health Minister was talking about it live on radio.
Congratulations. It’s because of your dedication to the people of Queensland that we’ve got to this point. This has only come about because doctors have stayed united as part of the Keep Our Doctors campaign.
But we can’t get too excited just yet. We haven’t seen the detail.
The Government told us they would send through updated documents today, and they just have. But we cannot rush this – our patients are relying on us to get this right.
We need to take the time to thoroughly go through the documents, get legal advice, and sit down with the Government to discuss the finer details. At first glance there still seems to be some areas that need further work.
For that reason the Pineapple meeting has been postponed by a week. The new date is Wednesday 16 April.
We have given the Government a week to sit down with us and discuss the details in order to get an offer that puts the needs of our patients ahead of the needs of bureaucrats. By next week we will be in a position to discuss the details of the negotiations with the Government and provide a well-informed view on the contracts.
We cannot rush this. Queensland’s health system is too important. We’ve seen what’s happened in the past when the Government has rushed things.
All we know right now is that the Minister and the Director-General have suggested that they will roll the amended addendum into the contract document; take the word ‘profitability’ out of the contract clauses; make the dispute resolution process clearer; and change the make-up of the ‘contracts advisory committee’.
The fact that there has been movement is a positive step, however we remain very cautiously optimistic.
The only thing that is clear at the moment is that your commitment to the campaign is working and that the people of Queensland are behind you.
We are hopeful we will be able to sit down with the Government over the coming days to discuss the detail and work out how we can reach an agreement that puts the needs of the people of Queensland first.
We will keep you updated as soon as information comes to hand. Further details about the Pineapple meeting on 16 April will be circulated shortly.
The Keep Our Doctors campaign team