Friday, November 08, 2019

Another big Queensland Health cost blunder

Amazing. This appears to be a re-run of the time when the premature rollout of a new Queensland Health payroll system was so badly bungled that it took over a billion to fix it.  Has nothing been learned?

Queensland's Auditor-General has been asked to investigate the performance of the state's troubled hospital ordering system. The Opposition has written to Brendan Worrall with its concerns around financial waste and mismanagement of the $135 million project known as S/4HANA following rolling issues exposed by The Courier-Mail.

Opposition Health spokeswoman Ros Bates wrote this week asking Mr Worrall to consider a performance audit that would make recommendations on how to fix shortcomings and ensure suppliers are being paid on time.

The Courier-Mail has exposed multiple occasions in which medical suppliers have put a hold on hospitals' credit line over unpaid bills. Their complaints forced Queensland Health to set up a special phone line to help them get paid that was receiving 100 calls a day.

Surplus money had also been used outside the project's $135 million budget to pay for extra staff to handle the troubled bailout, including 30 temporary staff to support accounts payable and the call centre. Additional shifts have also been put on at the state's distribution centres.

"The LNP is gravely concerned about the cost blowouts and rollout of this project," Ms Bates' letter reads. The new system, S/4HANA, was launched on August 1 and crashed two hours after its launch in what was dubbed a "critical incident". That launch had been previously delayed so that staff could be properly trained.

Health Minister Steven Miles and Queensland Health have repeatedly said the project was "working within expected parameters", despite complaints from hospital staff.

Specialist staff support is continuing past the contracted "rollout phase", which was meant to end on October 31. The system is used to order everything from cleaning sup-plies to medical goods, food and drugs.

From the Brisbane "Courier Mail" of 6/11/19

BOQ blunder in closing account: Tattoo artist "treated like a criminal"

For generations, Australians have split their savings between several banks. This is one example of why

A GOLD Coast tattoo artist says she has been treated like a criminal after Bank of Queensland froze her accounts without notice, leaving her unable to pay suppliers or run the business.

Inkspired Tattoo & Beauty owner Bianka Roggensack was left shocked this week when her BoQ business accounts were suddenly frozen. Ms Roggensack, who has been a BoQ customer for seven years, said the bank had given her until November 11 to remove thousands of dollars from her accounts before they were dosed under its policy of not providing services to tattooists.

The Coolangatta business owner said she had no trouble with the law or blemish on her banking record, and declared there was no reason for BoQ to shut the accounts. "It makes you feel discriminated against like I'm some sort of criminal," she said. "I'm a small business owner who's an active part of the community but my money's not good enough for Bank of Queensland."

It is understood the bank's policy of not providing services to tattooists is currently under review. A BoQ spokeswoman apologised for the "error" and said all services were reinstalled. "Unfortunately the customer's accounts were incorrectly frozen due to a failure in our processes," she said.

Four tattoo artists and three apprentices are employed at Ms Roggensack's tattoo studio, which lists hundreds of clients on its books.

The 31-year-old business owner is considering whether she will start the arduous task of switching banks. "All my accounting software, my direct debits, rent and insurances are locked in with BoQ," she said. Ms Roggensack was disappointed BoQ's decision came six years after the Newman State Government introduced a crackdown of the sector to combat organised crime.

"I am a licensed operator-of a studio, a recognised business and there was no reason to close down my accounts." she said.

From the Brisbane "Courier Mail" of 6/11/19

Cup day a good bet to release damning report of politicians over-riding official advice

TAXPAYER cash was splashed out on a project that was found to be ineligible for 'funding under a grants program meant to create jobs in regional areas. A damning independent assessment of the Regional Jobs and Investment Packages program found one in every five [bureaucratic] financing decisions — worth more than $150 million — were overturned by a ministerial panel.

The report which was released by the Federal Government during  the Melbourne race, found there was political interference, little accountability and almost no conflict of interest management in the grants program.

The highest number of discrepancies in the national program were in the Bowen Basin and Wide Bay/Burnett regions, covering five electorates, all held by the LNP.

Little reason was given for overturning departmental advice, other than that the assessment was wrong, the Australian National Audit Office found. Despite the criticism, the ANAO. did not identify which projects had funding approved or rejected against advice, only saying "there was no bias clearly evident in the decision making". 

From the Brisbane "Courier Mail" of 6/11/19

Calls for elite school old guard to resign

Hiley's trangressions were minor but the PMSA board went way too far in exonerating him and forcing a whistleblower out.  Previous post on this matter on May 9th.. Christian humility would have avoided all the heartburn

CHURCH elders who were at the helm during an elite school scandal face fresh pressure to resign over an alleged fraud linked to the peak body of four of the state's most prestigious private schools.

Parents and alumni are demanding the axing of the "old guard" of the strife-torn Presbyterian and Methodist Schools Association board after its hand-picked former executive manager last week faced court charged with fraud.

Ex-PMSA executive Rick Hiley, who was given a six-figure payout, appeared in court on a fraud charge after a two year-long investigation by police into alleged data theft from Somerville House Foundation.

It comes after The Courier-Mail exclusively revealed an alleged cover-up by the besieged PMSA board which refused to release a secret internal investigative report into the scandal and publicly exonerated Mr Hiley in 2017.

Lewd texts about a nude Korean [Many Koreans are Presbyterian] bathhouse between Mr Hiley and Police Inspector Rob McCall, then PMSA chair, also revealed a job offer and secret merger plans of the four schools.

Somerville House school principal Flo Kearney was sacked by the PMSA when she questioned their handling of the embarrassing saga but has since won a public apology and an undisclosed payout from the PMSA. Yesterday it emerged the heads of senior, middle and junior schools will also be exiting the historic all-girls private school at South Brisbane.

"Beyond PMSA", which represents 4000 supporters, said the PMSA "old guard" who presided over the debacle including chair Greg Adsett, Anne Bennett, Helen Murray, Greg Skelton and Jim Demack, should resign effective immediately.

The PMSA owns Somerville House, Brisbane Boys College, Clayfield College and Sunshine Coast Grammar School.

From the Brisbane "Courier Mail" of 6/11/19

Australia Flicks Switch on First New Power Station in 7 Years

Fascinating that the Greenies have not opposed this.  The dire blackouts that South Australia suffered when they demolished all their coal-fired generators must have focused a few minds

AGL Energy Ltd.’s Barker Inlet gas-fired power plant began operations Monday, Australia’s first major new power station since 2012, with its quick-start capability designed to back-up fast-growing wind and solar generation.

The A$295 million ($204 million) facility in South Australia has 210 megawatts of capacity and will help supplement renewables, which regularly meet more than 50% of the state’s power demand, the company said in a statement. The plant is capable of reaching full capacity within 5 minutes, AGL said.

“This is important, because it will allow us to provide a rapid response to changes in renewable generation supply and demand -- particularly wind generation here in South Australia,” Chief Executive Officer Brett Redman said in the statement. Barker Inlet is part of AGL’s A$2 billion pipeline of infrastructure projects aimed at bolstering the grid.

Australia will likely need around A$400 billion in new utility-scale generation assets over the next 30 years as aging coal-fired power plants retire, the Grattan Institute, a think tank, said in a study last month. However, the industry has complained that the lack of policy certainty at a national level is hampering investment.

The government has short-listed 12 projects under a program to underwrite investment in new generation, and is also giving financial backing to the A$5 billion-plus Snowy 2.0 pumped-hydro project that will provide large-scale energy storage to back-up renewables.


 Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).    For a daily critique of Leftist activities,  see DISSECTING LEFTISM.  To keep up with attacks on free speech see Tongue Tied. Also, don't forget your daily roundup  of pro-environment but anti-Greenie  news and commentary at GREENIE WATCH .  Email me  here


Paul said...

Everyone hates the complex and confusing new QH ordering system. They seem hell bent on replacing simple working methods with complex, user-unfriendly ones because high-tec...or something.

Paul said...

I don't get it. Was BOQ "deputized" to act as an arm of Law enforcement? The process of installing a tyranny seems to be rather long and banal, but it still moves forward. I wonder which other businesses or groups are on the radar for denial of service by private companies at the behest of Government?