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MEDICARE LOCALS |

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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MEDICARE LOCALS |

Closed for business…

(This post was updated on July 3, 4 and 20 – see bottom of post) Today marks the end of an era, for many organisations, their employees and those who have relied upon or been part of their work. The Australian National Preventive Health Agency *** The COAG Reform Council The final statement from John [...]

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MEDICARE LOCALS |

The Health Wrap: Big tobacco arguments; fad diets and pills; fairness, equality and human rights

Big tobacco arguments This fortnight the plain packaging debate dominated the headlines, sparked by an article published a few weeks ago by The Australian claiming industry figures showed the legislation was failing to cut smoking rates. The Australian’s figures and motives were questioned by Media Watch, but the newspaper hit back and continued to argue [...]

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MEDICARE LOCALS |

Primary health care – still fighting the good fight.

Many thanks to Jason Trethowan, CEO of Barwon Medicare Local for this eye-witness account of the impending move from Medicare Locals to Primary Health Networks. There has been much discussion about the future of Medicare Locals and what the federal government is recommending for the 24 new Primary Health Networks (PHNs). This week in Canberra, [...]

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MEDICARE LOCALS |

Look what’s missing from the latest round of primary health care reforms

In the wake of the explosion that was the Federal Budget, plenty of details have gone missing in action and may take time to surface. In the article below, health policy consultant Dr Sharon Willcox identifies some of the details that are missing from planned primary health care reforms, and also highlights some contradictions in [...]

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MEDICARE LOCALS |

Wonky Health launches, revealing how co-payments will increase the health gap

The impacts of a Medicare co-payment would be far-reaching, including increasing the health gap between wealthy and poorer areas, and making it harder for general practices to survive in disadvantaged areas. MPs (and others) wanting some evidence-based insights into how the co-payment would affect people and general practices across electorates are advised to dive into [...]

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MEDICARE LOCALS |

Dutton’s post-Budget speech

In Health Minister Peter Dutton’s first speech post-Budget speech he outlines the Government’s approach to health funding cuts and spending measures, including the following four principles: 1. that we must spend taxpayer funds on programmes and services that improve health outcomes for Australians; 2. that bureaucracy and red tape should be cut, and efficiencies and [...]

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MEDICARE LOCALS |

Rural Health, the biggest Budget loser

Lindy Swain, a pharmacist academic at the University Department of Rural Health and Chair of the Rural Pharmacy Support Network, outlines the impact of the Federal Budget measures on rural Australians, in particular asking what it means to put GPs at the centre of the health system in areas where there are no GPs. She [...]

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MEDICARE LOCALS |

Budget 2014: the good, the bad and the ugly (but mostly the ugly….)

With the bulk of the Health Budget already in the public domain, last night’s Budget speech was less about new announcements and more about selling the already unpopular measures to the Australian public.  Attempting to convince consumers to cough up more for their health care is not an easy task and in spinning the new [...]

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MEDICARE LOCALS |

Finding the opportunities – Bob Wells on the Budget

Robert Wells, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the Sax Institute, acknowledges the many negatives in last night’s Budget but also identifies some opportunities it provides, in particular in the areas of research and primary care. He also reminds State Premiers that they may have walked away from the ‘best offer the Commonwealth ever made’ on [...]

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