NSW Labor’s Shadow Health minister Walt Secord slammed the report into chemotherapy treatment by Dr John Grygiel in Orange and Bathurst. He said there was a culture of cover-ups in NSW Health.
“Health ministers come and go, but mistakes remain with patients and their families for the rest of their lives,” Mr Secord said.
“When you find a mistake that occurs in the health system, you have a responsibility to tell patients right away, sadly that has not happened.
“This is not about finger pointing, this is about how you responds to mistakes when they happen, you don’t cover them up, you take responsibility.”
Between 1989 and 2013, Dr Grygiel performed an outreach service for cancer patients as there were no local services.
The report released in Orange on Tuesday could not prove a link between 28 patients who were underdosed and subsequent deaths of 14 of those patients.
Mr Second repeated calls for a special commission of inquiry to determine the extent of potential underdosing by Dr Grygiel.
“The report is incomplete, it resolves nothing,” he said.
“Families in the Central West deserve better than this, Labor is reiterating our call for a special commission of inquiry.
“This report raises more questions than it answers, in fact it reveals there was only 28 patients Dr Grygiel served in the Central West from 1989 until 2013. It does not pass the believable test that there were only 28 patients.
“We need a special commission of inquiry with the powers of a royal commission to compel witnesses, and force people to come forward and to subpoena paperwork.
“I’m quite angry about this, I’ve sat across the table from people, patients and family members who could only communicate by writing answers to questions on scraps of paper.
“There is a sad culture of cover-up in the entire health and hospital system and that goes straight to the health minister.”
Mr Secord said setting up a hotline on a website was a continuation of her insensitivity to patients by Health Minister Jillian Skinner.