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Ardern: Ryall Can Save Christchurch Youth Health Service

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Jacinda Ardern
Jacinda Ardern

Health Minister Tony Ryall should step in to prevent Christchurch's 198 Youth Health Centre from closing its doors permanently, Labour's Youth Affairs spokesperson Jacinda Ardern said today.

The centre has been offering health services and advice to young Kiwis for over fifteen years, but a funding shortfall has forced 198's board to announce it will close in April.

"I support the move by Labour's local MPs and Progressive Leader and Wigram MP Jim Anderton to seek emergency support from Tony Ryall to give 198's board time to look for alternative funding," Jacinda Ardern said.

"A Ministry of Health report last September found: 'Youth Health One stop shops provide an incredibly important service in our communities and cater for health needs of some of our most vulnerable young people.

"198 has around 4000 young people on its books. If it is forced to close many of those young Kiwis will be left with no appropriate alternative health care."

Jacinda Ardern says 198 is one of the most long standing youth health service providers in the country.

"It's sad to see what has become a safe place for young people to seek help on health issues at real risk of closing," Jacinda Ardern said.

"Now more than ever young Kiwis need to know there is a place where free health advice is readily available.

"The MoH report said in this 'dynamic and uncertain setting, Youth Health one stop shops successfully provide a range of specialised integrated health and social care services for the youth of New Zealand'.

"Thousands of young Kiwis rely on Youth Health one stop shops. And now they are relying on Tony Ryall to keep them open for business."

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