Catholic Health says Govt safety net won't catch all
Catholic Health Australia CEO Francis Sullivan has welcomed the Government compromise that enabled yesterday's passing of Medicare legislation, but the universal insurance scheme needs more funding so that some people don't fall through the gaps.
Mr Sullivan said the Government shift will give provide a more generous package giving "real cash relief to the most needy in the community". But he doesn't believe it will substantially improve the rates of bulk billing.
"Only a major injection of funds into the Medicare Benefits Schedule would improve the bulk billing for most Australians," he said. "Since that has not been the course of action chosen by the Government, a generous safety net is an improvement in the short term."
"The benefits of Medicare are meant to be for everyone all the time. This safety net is a practical measure to bring immediate relief, but the universal insurance scheme needs more funding so that other people don't fall through the gaps.
"Both sides of the parliament still need to commit to major investment in Medicare to keep the promise of universal access a reality for all Australians."
A Better Safety Net, But Medicare Deserves More (Catholic Health Australia 10/3/04)
Catholic Health Australia
Department of Health and Ageing: MedicarePlus | MedicarePlus (Media Release 10/3/04)
$2.9bn Medicare safety net (The Australian 11/3/04)
The search for a bulk-billing GP (The Australian 11/3/04)
New age Medicare (Daily Telegraph 11/3/04)
$427m seals deal on Medicare (The Age 11/3/04)
Cries of wedge politics from Labor Party (ABC Radio PM 10/3/04)
Howard says more male teachers needed in schools (ABC Radio AM 10/3/04)
Medicare deal gets green light (ABC Radio PM 10/3/04)
Health professionals react to Medicare deal (ABC Radio PM 10/3/04)
Medicare deal gets green light (ABC Lateline 10/3/04)
Site for sore eyes (Young Witness 10/3/04)
11 Mar 2004