Today marks the introduction of Labor’s Child Dental Benefits Schedule, delivering a greater investment in dental services and improved access to dentists for thousands of Australian families.
This is a policy that delivers benefits to hundreds of thousands of Australian children and their families and one that would have never been realised were it not for a Labor government.
For too long dental services had not been available to families who most needed them. That’s why Labor increased funding for dental services as well as increased the number of training places for dental students.
The total package makes $2.7 billion made available from today. From 1 July this year the states and territories will receive $1.3 billion to expand services for adults in the public dental system.
This policy will provide access to dentists for around 3.4 million children aged 2-17. It provides a capped benefit of $1,000 per child over a two calendar year period and is available to families receiving Family Tax Benefit Part A or an equivalent Australian Government payment.
“There is already a clear distinction emerging between how Labor prioritised the health portfolio and the total disregard the Coalition is showing for this important area” Shadow Health Minister Catherine King said.
“There are hundreds of thousands of Australians on public dental waiting lists”.
“I am concerned about what this government’s lack of interest in health will mean for the thousands of Australians waiting for important dental surgery. To date the Coalition has only demonstrated it sees health as an area where ‘savings’ can be found”.