Medicare

Saving Medicare: universal health care is vital in a fair society

This joint statement was issued by unions and campaign organisations on February 10.

***

Australia’s universal health insurance scheme, Medicare, has ensured world-leading public health care is accessible for all, for over 30 years. The availability of bulk-billing has delivered a health system that is more cost-effective and equitable than in many comparable OECD countries.

No to Abbott's back-door GP tax scam: Socialist candidate

"The Abbott government's proposed back-door GP tax is a massive scam, and should be totally rejected by the whole community," Susan Price, Socialist Alliance candidate for the seat of Summer Hill in the March 2015 NSW state election, said on December 10.

"Today, International Human Rights Day, is a good time to stand up for universal public health as a basic human right. Abbott's proposed cut to the Medicare rebate for doctors still means the beginning of the end of our treasured universal, national public health system, Medicare," she said.

Medicare: 'Free' does not mean worthless

Just because we don't pay for something, it doesn't mean that it has no value. Clean air, safe food and public education are just some of the things that we expect to be provided “free” by governments. Yet ask anyone, and they will tell you how valuable these things are. We expect government to provide these services as a matter of course.

'Save Medicare' march on Abbott's office

Several hundred people attended a rally and march to Prime Minister Tony Abbott's electoral office in Manly on September 20. The demands of the rally were: "No compromise — no GP co-payment; no cuts or privatisation; and free, public health care for all."

General secretary of the NSW Nurses and Midwives Association Brett Holmes said the GP co-payment would spell the end of equitable, universal health care under Medicare and it was time the federal government listened to the people it purported to represent.

Five Medicare myths busted

Medicare is 30 years old and is the scheme that publicly funds Australia’s universal health care system. Medicare has always generated political conflict. From 1972 to 1984 Australia became the first developed country to introduce a universal health care system (under Gough Whitlam), then discard it (under Malcolm Fraser).

In those 12 years Australia tried, on five separate occasions, to balance public and private insurance schemes. Finally, in 1984, the Bob Hawke government reintroduced a universal health care system, Medicare.

Profits should never come before patients

"This country can afford a universal healthcare system that provides access to quality health care for everyone," Judith Kiejda, assistant general secretary of the NSW Nurses and Midwives Association (NSW NMWA), told a forum at the University of Technology Sydney on May 27.

The forum, organised by the Save Medicare Campaign, heard Kiejda and Professor Bill Mitchell, director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE) at Newcastle University, addressed the topic, "No to Abbott-Care. Hands Off Medicare."

Medicare payment will increase health costs

Terry Barnes, a former adviser to Prime Minister Tony Abbott, is credited with coming up with the bright idea of introducing a $6 payment when people visit their GP.

After Barnes left the prime minister’s employ, he wrote a submission to the government’s Commission of Audit on behalf of the Australian Centre for Health Research, a right-wing think-tank set up by a private health insurer, proposing the extra charge for GP visits. He claimed that it would save $750 million over four years.

Unions challenge threat to Medicare

Unions NSW has endorsed a “Stop Abbott: Save Medicare” rally planned for February 15, 1pm, at Town Hall Square.

Mark Lennon, secretary of Unions NSW, will speak at the action with representatives of the NSW Nurses and Midwives Association, and the Health Services Union.

Other speakers will include members of the Doctors Reform Society, Aboriginal and pensioner organisations, and political parties. The main rally demands are: no fees for GPs, free and fully funded health care, and no privatisation or cuts.

No new fees: defend Medicare

A big attack on Medicare is on the cards after Prime Minister Tony Abbott refused to rule out forcing all patients to pay an upfront cost when they visit the doctor.

Former health advisor to Abbott, Terry Barnes, has written a paper to the federal government's Commission of Audit recommending a $6 upfront fee to see a doctor. The commission was appointed by the federal government to propose business-friendly cuts to government spending before the May budget.

PHOTO STORY: Rallies tell Abbott 'Hands off Medicare!'

The first of a number of rallies organised around Australia to protest a proposal of the Abbott Liberal-National federal government to introduce a $5-$6 "co-payment" for Medicare bulk-billed visits to the doctor was held on January 4 in Sydney. Organised through social media, about 500 attended on short notice.

Rallies will be held in other major cities over the next week. These include:

Perth
3:00 PM, Saturday, January 11, 2014 - Murray St Mall
https://www.facebook.com/events/212272045625191/

Melbourne

Syndicate content