Doctors take on minister to stop hospital sale

Orthopaedic surgeon Dr Stephen Ruff told Medical Observer he made a last-minute decision to run as an independent for the seat of North Shore because he was convinced the sell-off plans would be disastrous for the hospital.

“Negotiations over the sale of the southern campus have largely broken down, and I think when that happens in a civilised Western democracy the only thing you can do is stand against her,” Dr Ruff said.

He said the state planned to raise about $97 million by selling the two-acre (8000m2) parcel adjacent to the Pacific Highway, taking advantage of high real estate prices.

But the proposed price tag would not even cover two months’ running costs at the hospital, he said. It would go into the health department’s consolidated revenue and just meet the cost of a planned carpark renovation at Westmead Hospital in Sydney’s west.

“It might make some sense to sell it today, but in