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GENERAL PRACTICE |

And still the evidence and argument mount against a $7 GP co-payment.

The Senate’s Community Affairs References Committee on Friday published its findings on out of pocket costs in Australian healthcare, saying that imposing additional costs would make it harder for people, particularly in vulnerable groups to access primary care, which would not only be at the cost of their own health but to the whole system, [...]

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GENERAL PRACTICE |

It’s about the wellbeing of all of us, not just doctors: concerns re AMA copayment deal

(This post has been updated to link to include the AMA’s co-payment proposal and some Twitter reaction) “When it comes to health costs, no decision about us should be taken without us.” The national peak community and health consumer groups – the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS), Consumers Health Forum, and Public Health Association [...]

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GENERAL PRACTICE |

Unhealthy haste? What are the implications of outsourcing Medicare, PBS claims and services?

Less than two weeks ago the Federal Government called for Expressions of Interest (EOI) from the private sector to provide claims and payment services for Medicare (MBS) and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS), a $29 billion operation currently managed by the Department of Human Services. The EOI closes this Friday, 22 August. Such a privatisation [...]

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GENERAL PRACTICE |

Is an annual fee the answer to paying for healthcare?

The way we fund and pay for healthcare can have a significant impact on both the equity and the efficiency of our health system. A single, unified funder for all health care is often held up as the ‘holy grail’ of health funding systems but this goal may be unachievable in the context of our existing federated [...]

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GENERAL PRACTICE |

AHCRA Communique highlights the role of primary health care

In mid-July thirty-seven member organisations of the Australian Health Care Reform Alliance (AHCRA) came together from around Australia for the National Health Reform Summit to assess the key needs and issues in the Australian health system. Sixty participants were challenged and informed by a range of stimulating speakers from diverse organisations and perspectives. At the [...]

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GENERAL PRACTICE |

“Primary care leadership needs to wake up and start a revolution.”

Australia is not the only country with a health system under pressure from rising health care costs and increasing demand from a growing and ageing population.  A spate of recent research and policy papers from Europe shows that this part of the world is debating many of the same issues that confront governments, policy makers [...]

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GENERAL PRACTICE |

2014 the year of the co-payment: lessons from the NHS

What can we learn from the UK’s recent experiments in primary health care about co-payments, economic incentives and the impact of creating barriers to access? Margaret Faux, from the University of Technology, Sydney, outlines some important messages for Governments and policy makers wishing to head down the same path as the National Health Services.  She writes:   This year two of the best among the developed [...]

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GENERAL PRACTICE |

The real agenda: Privatisation and safety nets, not co-payments

Today Associate Professor Brian Owler, President of the AMA, made the news with his speech at the National Press Club expressing the concerns that the AMA holds regarding the federal budget and the current vision of future health services. Dr Tim Woodruff, Vice President of the Doctors Reform Society, has a somewhat different take on [...]

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GENERAL PRACTICE |

Will there be a Royal Commission into premature deaths caused by the Federal Budget?

Professor Peter Brooks, School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne writes: Imagine the future: HEADLINE STORY FROM THE NEW AGE NEWSPAPER MARCH 10TH 2025 ‘ABBOTT AND HOCKEY APPEAR BEFORE ROYAL COMMISSION INTO PREMATURE DEATHS CAUSED BY THE FALLOUT OF THE 2014 BUDGET’ “Ex PM Tony Abbott and ex Treasurer Joe Hockey faced rigorous [...]

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GENERAL PRACTICE |

Abbott’s Medicare reforms – today’s crime is tomorrow’s co-payment

(Note from Croakey: A correction to this post was made on July 22; correcting mention of “Justice Murphy” to “Justice Kirby” in the 2nd last paragraph.) The GP co-payment remains a hot topic. This week ABC news online flagged that the legal process for introducing the $7 GP copayment may not be straight forward, and [...]

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