Duncan Garner: Labour has 'finally woken up' on Pharmac cancer drug funding

OPINION: I was driving towards home yesterday when my phone went beep and I had a look at it once I'd stopped.

It was cancer advocate Malcolm Mullholand whose wife Wiki has stage four breast cancer and needs drugs not funded here in New Zealand. 

I always fear the worst when I see his name. My heart beats louder. 'Please no bad news Malcolm', I say to myself. 

Then he said "we bloody did it". And he has.

This group of women with stage four breast cancer and other cancers have broken through the sound shell surrounding the Beehive and they will get some of the drugs funded that Pharmac has so far refused to back. 

It's a huge deal. They could save some lives, they will prolong others, but boy this has been like pulling the fingernails from each and every finger of every minister of this Government.

If this Government cared about this group of middle-aged Kiwis they had damn funny way of showing it. Talk about last cab off the rank. I'm not sure one taxi turned up at all. 

But Labour has finally woken. They'll claim Pharmac has decided to do this all on its own. Believe that and I'll introduce you to Freddy Mercury who just happens to be staying at my place for a few days on his comeback tour - it's a duet concert with Elvis.

Either way, this is great news. Women will see their kids do things that previously they wouldn't have. They will be kept alive as they should. Any decent society would do this. 

Our cancer system needs a kick up the backside, our politicians need to be shaken furiously and told what to do.

It shouldn't have to be like this every couple of years. We are far too slow, far too out of date and if this was the Olympics we would have come in 52nd equal with some tinpot dictatorship on access to the best cancer drugs. 

We deserve better, we must demand better and if politicians can't hear this this time, I suggest they stand aside and let someone else with purpose do the job. 

Malcolm, you are the man, you are a leader, a great dad and amazing husband to Wiki

The Government said no to the wrong guy. Chur, chur mate. But the fight isn't over, although, you know that better than any of us.

Duncan Garner is the host of The AM Show.

Contact Newshub with your story tips: