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HEALTH REFORM |

Health reform coalition warns that predicted budget changes are unhealthy

This statement was issued yesterday by the Australian Health Care Reform Alliance. Fair and equal access is an essential quality of our health system There seems to be a real danger that decisions to be made in the forthcoming Federal Budget may result in a less equitable health system. This would be a disastrous consequence [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

Predictions about demise of Medicare Locals are not good news for health or healthcare costs

The Federal Budget is looking like bad news for Medicare Locals – and this means bad news for the community’s health and the future of healthcare costs, says health policy analyst Jennifer Doggett. Below her article are links to recommended reading on recent health policy news – and some Twitter reaction to today’s headlines. Jennifer [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

The Health Wrap: What the evidence uncovered; reaching out to vaccine skeptics; health funding waiting games

By Kellie Bisset What the evidence uncovered Evidence has turned the tables on two issues this past fortnight: whether our multimillion national investment in antiviral drugs is justified; and whether significant spending on alternative treatments such as homeopathy is a good use of money. First, to antiviral drugs, and the release of a Cochrane Review [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

Warning, warning – these are weird times when zombies are attacking the health system

In a sign of the general level of weirdness surrounding recent health policy debates, the AMA is calling on the Government to “put an end to the crazy policy speculation being floated in the media”. So weird and worrying are the signs, in fact, that Dr Tim Senior is fearing zombie apocalypse. And yes, you [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

Hospital workforce reform: better jobs and more care

Peter Breadon writes: Employees are the public hospital system’s most valuable resource, and its biggest cost. Wages account for nearly 70% of recurrent hospital spending. To keep hospital care affordable in a time of rising demand, it’s vital that skills are used to the full. Yet many professionals work well below their skill level. Does it take 15 [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

Rationing care vs increasing taxes – the health system sustainability myth

Stephen Duckett writes: In the lead-up to the May budget, the seemingly inexorable rise in health spending has unleashed a “sustainability panic”: rhetoric that health system costs are out of control and drastic measures are needed to make the system affordable. Sustainability panic is often used to justify shifting the burden of controlling health spending from the [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

The Health Wrap: Workplace mental health, an Indigenous health mix-bag, and health budget predictions

By Melissa Davey Employee well-being is being addressed, but needs work Mental health in the workplace is becoming an increasingly discussed issue as mental illness becomes less stigmatised, and workplaces are seen as key partners in its prevention and treatment. Writing for Croakey, Jaelea Skehan and Brian Kelly say it is promising to see workplaces given a [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

Finding savings in healthcare: moving from theory to reality

With a tough federal Budget fast approaching, many in the health sector are offering up suggestions for where the Abbott Government might find savings. Some of these options were outlined in an article published in Croakey earlier this week. They include: cutting the price paid for generic drugs and encouraging substituting brand name drugs with [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

Comprehensive Primary Health Care – what works? A Research Symposium

Comprehensive and integrated primary care is well documented in the research literature as providing the most cost-effective and equitable mechanism for preventing and managing chronic disease.  Yet despite a growing body of research supporting this form of care, it often appears to be put in the ‘too hard’ basket of governments and policy makers. This [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

Want Medicare savings? Stop paying for private hospitals

Peter Sivey writes: The polls this week suggest half of Australians think the Abbott government should reduce the cost of Medicare. My solution? Claw back some of the A$9 billion the government pays to private hospitals. Consider my experience … A few years ago I twisted my knee playing football. My GP, maybe after estimating my salary, suggested [...]

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