1 Aug 2006

Samoa opposition says health policy change was not announced

3:16 pm on 1 August 2006

Samoa's opposition leader, Le Mamea Ropati, says there was no indication in the budget that the government planned to stop paying airfares for those referred for overseas treatment.

Le Mamea says the number of patients going out of the country for medical help has increased.

He says the government claimed that the setting up of a dialysis unit would cut the number of overseas medical referrals and save huge amounts of money and no mention was made of the airfare idea while parliament was still sitting.

"The budget was just passed a few weeks ago and it was never mentions in the Minister of Finances speech. So he should have made some comment on this issue when they were talking in parliament about the budget."

Samoa's opposition leader, Le Mamea Ropati.

The Prime Minister has made it clear that the government will continue to pay for all overseas medical expenses.