p style=”text-align: justify”>Shadow Minister for Health Catherine King MP and Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Health Nick Champion MP today visited the Royal Adelaide Hospital to express their concern first hand at the Abbott government’s unilateral decision to rip $650 million from South Australia’s public hospitals.
Shadow Minister for Health Catherine King MP and Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Health Nick Champion MP today visited the Royal Adelaide Hospital to express their concern first hand at the Abbott government’s unilateral decision to rip $650 million from South Australia’s public hospitals.
The Abbott Government’s attack on Australia’s health system is the biggest threat to Medicare in 30 years. Whether it’s in prevention, with the closure of the Australian National Preventive Health Agency and the tearing up of the $368 million National Partnership Agreement on Preventive Health; the $3.5 billion GP Tax and $1.3 billion increase to the cost of medicines and unfair changes to the MBS and PBS safety nets; or the $57 billion cut to Australia’s public hospitals, the Abbott government’s attack on health is occurring at every level.
This is all part of the Abbott Government’s plan to introduce a user pays, two tiered health system like that which exists in the United States.
Last month the Senate Select Committee on Health heard evidence from the South Australian Department of Health that the GP Tax is expected to result in an additional 290,000 emergency department presentations a year, costing the state’s health system $80 million.
"It was a privilege today to see the outstanding role the staff at the RAH perform, often in a very challenging environment. I first visited the RAH to meet with DonateLife staff in 2011 who had achieved some of the highest organ and tissue donation and transplantation rates in the country. I was as impressed then as I am today at the calibre of the hospital’s team and passion for their work" Shadow Minister for Health Catherine King said.
"The Abbott Government’s unilateral decision to tear up the agreement with all states and territories – cutting more than $50 billion in funding in the process – will impact on emergency department waiting times, elective surgery waiting times, and end any constructive working relationship with states and territories when it comes to health".
For South Australia the cuts are the equivalent of closing every bed at one of the state’s major teaching hospitals.
"Staff at the RAH and the South Australian health system do a fantastic job which is being made harder by Abbott’s attack on the SA health system. The combination of the GP Tax and ripping $650 million out of South Australia’s hospitals will drive up emergency room waiting times and put at risk vulnerable patients. South Australians deserve better" said Nick Champion.
As the party that introduced Medicare Labor will continue to stand up for every Australian’s right to high quality, affordable healthcare. Tony Abbott does not have a mandate to privatise Australia’s health system and Labor will stand up to it.