19 Aug 2009

Call for agency to oversee health changes

6:12 am on 19 August 2009

Health and Disability Commissioner Ron Paterson is backing a call for an independent national agency to be set up to boost safety and quality in health services.

Mr Paterson is also urging that hotly debated recommendations governing the future shape of the health system be given careful consideration.

A ministerial review group says the health system has serious flaws and changes are needed so it can deliver what is required in the future.

Mr Paterson says he backs the committee's view that a national agency should be established to oversee safety improvements that could save at least $50 million a year.

He says patients write to him about failings in the health system, and these problems must be fixed.