Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services Cameron Dick (left).
Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services Cameron Dick (left). Patrick Woods

Health Minister fires back: 'What did your govt do to overpaid nurses?'

HEALTH Minister Cameron Dick's office has responded to ongoing questions about his department's relentless pursuit of employees affected by the payroll debacle.

And if Member for Kawana Jarrod Bleijie was hoping Mr Dick would simply wipe the slate clean, he would be wrong.

Mr Dick's spokeswoman said Queensland Health was doing its job in pursuing former employees like Krysten Harvey over money it alleged was overpaid in 2009 and 2010.

"It is the responsibility of Queensland Health to recover overpayments made to current and former employees,” Mr Dick's spokeswoman said.

"I understand this is the same process for the recovery of overpayments that was in place when Jarrod Bleijie was a Minister in the Newman-Nicholls Government,” the spokeswoman said. 

"While Mr Bleijie was in government, the LNP referred 2678 cases to debt collectors to recover a debt of more than $6 million.

"Matters are only ever referred to debt collection agencies once all other options have been exhausted. It is a last resort action.

"Reasons for undertaking debt recovery action include refusing to engage, defaulting on repayment agreements, or attempts to delay the recovery process unnecessarily.

"Current and former employees can always discuss their specific cases and any concerns they have with their appointed Department of Health case manager.  

"There is also a number of hardship provisions that can be applied to overpayments.”

The Daily continues to receive messages from Queensland Health employees and former employees being pursued for funds.

One nurse, who declined to be named, said she was being pursued over an alleged $2000 overpayment she was required to pay back at $50 a fortnight.

"Being an aged pensioner, this was not easy,” the nurse said.