No blame game for Barnett
No worries: FSH delays do not upset Colin Barnett. Picture: Nic Ellis/The West Australian

Colin Barnett says he does not care if the Health Department presided over a series of failures that delayed the opening of Fiona Stanley Hospital - and doubts the public does either.

The Premier declined yesterday to back Treasurer Troy Buswell's view that "performance failures" by the department in information technology and clinical services planning had blighted the hospital's commissioning.

Mr Barnett admitted the Government had underestimated the complexity, cost and time involved in installing equipment, readying staff and establishing IT systems.

Asked whether he too thought the department was responsible for the series of failures, Mr Barnett said. "I don't care.

"And I don't think the people of WA care. What they want the Government to do is to work to solve some of the issues, and they are complex, to make sure this hospital can be occupied as soon as possible and as safely as possible," he said.

"I'm not interested in the blame game, I just want Health, Treasury and every other person involved to get on with the job."

Later, in question time, Mr Barnett reacted to Opposition scrutiny of the Government's relationship with FSH private operator Serco by asking why Labor was "persecuting" the company's 3000 WA employees.

He said savings to the taxpayer for outsourcing FSH management services would be $500 million over the life of the 20-year, $4.3 billion contract.

Former under-treasurer Tim Marney revealed last week that cost blowouts in commissioning, transition, IT and contract costs with Serco totalled $300 million.

The West Australian

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