Millions spent and only 7 per cent of target reached

The measles catch-up campaign is just the latest expensive botched health programme under Labour, National’s Health spokesperson Dr Shane Reti says.

“The $20 million two year measles catch-up programme was completed last month and the results are dismal.

“The target was to reach 300,000 people aged 15–30 years old. Unfortunately it only managed to reach 23,500 – a mere 7 per cent of the targeted vaccination rate.

“Even more shocking is the vaccination rate for Māori in places like Tairāwhiti, which is considered a high risk area.

“Modelling suggests there are 1,200 Māori in the target age group in Tairāwhiti but the botched program only managed to vaccinate 28 people in two years – or 2 per cent of the targeted number.

“This program was doomed to fail from the start, with promotional material taking three months to arrive and the Government forced to destroy $8 million worth of expired measles vaccine due to the poor uptake.

“Minister Little can’t deliver anything. He has failed to deliver a health workforce, failed New Zealanders who are forced to wait longer in every aspect of the health sector, from surgical wait lists to the emergency room, and now he has failed to deliver a measles vaccine programme.

“Shortland Street couldn’t dream this up!”