Adolf has followed with considerable interest the Mexican stand off between Diagnostic Medlab and Labtests. There is no better analysis of the whole shebang than this piece by Cactus Kate. It is long but well written and is worth a bit of time and study.
The guts of the deal is that the dickhead Arthur who heads DML in NZ underestimated the competition for his cosy little gold mine in the Auckland region and the nasty newcomer beat him hands down in the tendering process. Now dickhead Arthur is trying to save his sorry arse by scaring the shit out of Auckland patients and frustrating the decision of the DHBs and the courts by attempting to abort the transition from one supplier to another. If he fails, he's out on the pavement collecting the dole.
Technically and legally OK but morally and pragmatically very stupid.
You see, Labtests are not going to sit around with their thumbs up their bums waiting upon the indulgence of dickhead Arthur. They are going to screw him - and his staff, if they are stupid enough to believe the balderdash he is churning out.
Adolf's spies are out and the word is trickling in that there is a cunning plan to strand dickhead Arthur way up the creek without even a toothpick with which to scratch his arse.
DML thinks it has the whip hand because it appears to have cornered all the suitable blood letting venues and staff. Well, think again dickhead.
Adolf is advised there has been a massive block booking of some 400 camper vans for a four month period commencing one month before changeover date - September 7th 2009.
These bookings have been carried out secretly using cover names, a variety of dates and booking in groups of four or five. They will be outfitted for blood letting in the month before change over. Arrangements are being made with Progressive and Foodstuffs for their supermarket car parks to be used for venues for a three month period. Each camper van will service three supermarket sites each day - on rotation.
Fifty to sixty skilled staff will be shuttled in from Australia to man the units and or train new staff to take over.
All of this extra expense will be partially funded by the DHBs themselves because if they allow dickhead Arthur to disrupt normal medical services then they will have their arses handed to them on a plate by Tony Ryall. There is sufficient evidence now in the public domain for the DHBs to take legal action against DML for recovery of these costs.
The biggest losers in this fight are current staff of DML who are being shamelessly used as cannon fodder in a losing battle - in fact a battle which already is lost. Labtests will announce publicly that DML staff have until December the 7th (Pearl Harbour day) to apply for positions with the new regime. After that date no employment will be offered.
If I were a DML member of staff, I would right now be seeking a written guarantee of employment for at least six months after September 7th. Of course dickhead Arthur won't give such a guarantee. He'll just offer more inane platitudes and hollow promises which later will be broken.
Does anyone seriously expect DML's Australian masters to sit around for six months paying all those property leases and those hundreds of staff while there is no revenue coming in? Zero, zilch, nada?
Who knows, it may turn out that these mobile blood testing units turn out to be so much better than the old system that they become a permanent fixture.
After all, we in the life insurance industry now employ an outfit called Lifetest who sends a pretty little nurse along to your office or home to do your GP medical, take your bloods, blood pressure, height and weight.
DML is a monument to history.
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