p>Despite repeated promises from the Prime Minister, Treasurer and Minister for Health that the health budget would not be cut, Australians are once again being shown this is not the government they were promised.
Despite repeated promises from the Prime Minister, Treasurer and Minister for Health that the health budget would not be cut, Australians are once again being shown this is not the government they were promised.
Reports today reveal that the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme is in the Abbott Government’s sights for cuts. Some medicines are seen as “unaffordable across the long-term” according to reports, which can only be a bad outcome for patients.
Mr Dutton has failed to promise that cuts will not be made to medical research, cancer centres or Medicare Locals, and now it’s clear that cuts to the PBS are being considered too.
Mr Dutton has no vision for his portfolio other than finding savings for the Prime Minister.
More than two and a half months after taking over he has yet to articulate what his vision is in health or what his priorities are, other than cuts.
Instead we have seen –
• the abolition of the Alcohol and Other Drugs Council;
• a backflip on no Medicare Locals closing;
• the abolition of an expert panel on infant formula;
• and $100 million ripped from the Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital.
It’s not a good start by Mr Dutton and the Abbott Government on health, and the future looks just as bleak.
The government needs to promise this morning that cuts will not be made to the PBS. This will give clarity to the sector as well as give Australians certainty that they will have access to the life-saving drugs they need.