BILL SHORTEN MP
LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION
SHADOW MINISTER FOR INDIGENOUS AFFAIRS & ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDERS
MEMBER FOR MARIBYRNONG
CATHERINE KING MP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR HEALTH AND MEDICARE
MEMBER FOR BALLARAT
LABOR CANDIDATE FOR PAGE
RADIATION THERAPY FACILITY FOR GRAFTON
A Shorten Labor Government will boost cancer services for the people of Grafton by investing in a local radiation therapy facility.
This is part of Labor’s announcement that we will invest $60 million building 13 new radiation therapy facilities in regional areas across Australia, so people don’t have to travel far from home to access the services in the big cities.
This is just one element of our $2.3 billion cancer care package – the most important investment in Medicare since Bob Hawke introduced it.
Radiation therapy is underutilised in Australia, with just one in three patients offered the treatment compared to one in two in North America and Europe.
That means approximately 15 per cent of Australian cancer patients who would benefit from radiation therapy miss out.
Part of the reason for this gap is a lack of approved facilities, particularly outside our big cities. Labor will fully fund the Radiation Therapy Advisory Group’s plan to close this gap in regional areas.
Cancer is responsible for the biggest burden of disease in Australia, and cancer patients in regional and rural areas are more likely to die within five years of diagnosis.
This is one of the many ways in which the seven million Australians who live in the regions have poorer health outcomes than those in the cities.
Labor is committed to addressing this inequality.
This investment in a radiation therapy centre for Grafton is part of Labor’s Fair Go Action Plan to protect Medicare and fix our hospitals.
We can afford these investments because we are tackling unfair tax loopholes and making multinationals pay their fair share.
People in the Northern Rivers deserve the same access to vital hospital care as people in downtown Sydney or Brisbane.
Scott Morrison is cutting $215 million from NSW hospitals between 2017 and 2020.
Only Labor has a plan to reverse these cuts and deliver a regional radiation therapy facility for Grafton.
WEDNESDAY, 10 APRIL 2019