Ghandi once said, “It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.” Indeed, this is a quote by which our senior QLD doctors live by, promoting the wellbeing of patients and ensuring optimal care for those in need. The Newman Government doesn’t understand the value of this ‘real wealth’ – they see money as the best indictor for patient care and will do anything to ensure that this erroneous system plagues our QLD hospitals. The implications of such a flawed system are horrific: if your father was rushed to hospital because of a heart attack at 5am, the doctor may not be able to administer optimal treatment because it was too expensive, or if your sibling got into a horrific car accident, the doctors may not be able to reduce complications because they can’t perform the procedure in the 2hr time slot allocated (by the Government) for a 10hr procedure in order to “improve” patient outcomes and efficiency. The reality is, all this is possible if us QLders don’t stand together and tell Newman what he is doing to our hospitals and senior medical officers is downright UNACCEPTABLE.

Newman and Springborg have put in place unacceptable contracts for doctors to sign, which not only remove job security for doctors, but also jeopardizes patient care on the basis that the Government will dictate treatment options. That means that when you’re in hospital, the Government, run by a health minister lacking a 10th grade education, will be deciding your treatment and not the doctors who have dedicated their life to this profession and have SWORN to look after the sick wholeheartedly. The latter is what doctors will be prevented from doing so if Newman doesn’t reconsider these contracts. As of this upcoming week, more than 2000 senior QLD doctors will resign from the public healthcare system if acceptable changes do not occur to these contracts. Where does this leave QLD and will happen to the sick in QLD that cannot afford private hospitals? You see QLDers, not only does this affect our senior doctors, who are not to mention humans as well, despite their superhuman efforts to keep QLDers healthy, but it also directly affects YOU! Who will treat you? Who will be there by your side when things go pear-shaped, medically? Who will be willing to altruistically sacrifice their family time, the upbringing of their children, or just simply being there for you in times of need if our senior doctors are gone? I still ask myself this question and have yet to find an answer. Personally, I don’t have private health insurance and so I depend on public hospitals and the expertise of the constituent senior doctors, which in my time of need have never failed me. I still remember the time I woke up from a concussion to the sight of a friendly smile freely given by a senior doctor, and the time I spent in hospital after getting food poison from my birthday cake, which of course wasn’t a pleasant experience, but made better by the caring nature of the attending doctors who frequently checked up on me. Now, I also rely on senior doctors in the public system for something else – my medical training. If senior doctors leave, who will teach us medical students and junior doctors, the future of medicine? Our senior QLD doctors are an invaluable source of knowledge and are vital for our training, and they do so at expense of their time, all in order to ensure that QLDers are cared for optimally.

Overall, all our QLD doctors want is the ability to fulfill their oath they took upon graduation – to do the best for their patients – and they should not be told how to do so by uneducated politicians. All our QLD doctors want is to ensure their job security, that they won’t be dismissed without reason, at any time, so that they too can provide for their families.

If you believe in our QLD doctors, if you believe in fairness and justice, and if you want to have continued access to the best healthcare globally, make sure you stand by our senior medical officers. Get in contact with your member of parliament and know that the fate of QLD health sits in YOUR hands and support.

John Girgis