p>The Abbott Government’s moves towards privatising Medicare and Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme claims means even more cuts to frontline public services and Australian jobs.
The Abbott Government’s moves towards privatising Medicare and Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme claims means even more cuts to frontline public services and Australian jobs.
People receiving healthcare and targeted government support deserve to be treated with dignity and respect.
They shouldn’t have to stand in line at Australia Post, at some private company’s shopfront or spend hours on hold to some international call-centre, just to lodge a claim or hand in a form.
They also shouldn’t have to worry about their most sensitive medical and financial details being handed over to a private company.
The Government should be focused on continuing the service delivery reform agenda introduced by Labor and making Medicare and Centrelink more efficient, not on selling it off to fix its budget of broken promises at the expense of sick and vulnerable Australians.
Labor is extremely concerned about the impact this will have on Australian jobs, the data security of all Australians and the efficiency and effectiveness of basic frontline services like the processing of Medicare claims.
There is no assurance from this government that a private company which took over these services wouldn’t send Australian jobs overseas. Centrelink and Medicare claim services in remote and regional Australia could be decimated.
The market testing of privatising Medicare payments continues the Abbott Government’s privatisation push which already includes the Australian Hearing Services.
Labor will fight to protect these frontline public services and ensure that people can continue to access the high-quality services they need, when they need it.