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Tuesday, 12 May 2009
Page: 3572


Mr Baldwin asked the Minister for Health and Ageing, in writing, on 9 February 2009:

In respect of the Medicare Chronic Disease Dental Scheme—

(1)   Since what date has the program been in operation.

(2)   For each financial year since the program’s conception, including the financial year to date, what total sum of payments has been made under the program

(a)   nationally,

(b)   in New South Wales (NSW), and

(c)   in the electorate of Paterson.

(3)   What sum is the average treatment claim per individual

(a)   nationally,

(b)   in NSW, and

(c)   in the electorate of Paterson.

(4)   In the postcodes of 2311, 2312, 2315, 2316, 2317, 2318, 2319, 2320, 2321, 2322, 2323, 2324, 2415, 2420, 2421, 2422, 2423, 2424, 2425, 2428, 2429, and 2430: for each financial year since the program’s conception, including the financial year to date, what is the total

(a)   sum of payments,

(b)   number of patients referred to dental practitioners, and

(c)   number of procedures undertaken.

(5)   For each financial year since the program’s conception, including the financial year to date, how many patients have been referred to dental practitioners by general practitioners

(a)   nationally,

(b)   in NSW, and

(c)   in the electorate of Paterson.

(6)   What total number and types of procedures have been performed under the program.


Ms Roxon (Minister for Health and Ageing) —The answer to the honourable member’s question is as follows:

(1)   The Medicare chronic disease dental scheme commenced on 1 July 2004. It was modified from 1 November 2007.

(2)  

(a)   and (b) The total benefits made nationally and for New South Wales under the chronic disease dental scheme by financial year are in the table below:

Financial Year

Benefits paid

(a) national

Benefits paid (b) NSW (by state of patient)

1 July 2004 - 30 June 2005

$304,662

$189,285

1 July 2005 - 30 June 2006

$683,645

$481,334

1 July 2006 - 30 June 2007

$845,629

$577,933

1 July 2007 - 30 June 2008

$89,526,040

$65,651,402

1 July 2008 - 28 February 2009

$213,078,865

$160,901,571

(c)   Data for the electorate of Paterson has not been provided. Generally health statistics are provided at the national or state level. To provide statistics at a smaller geographic level can lead to issues of privacy and confidentiality.

(3)   The average total benefit claimed per patient:

(a)   Nationally is $2,122

(b)   NSW is $2,262

(c)   Electorate level data has not been provided for privacy and confidentiality reasons.

(4)   Postcode level data has not been provided for privacy and confidentiality reasons.

(5)  

(a)   and (b) The table below shows the number of patients who have accessed at least one dental service in that financial year.

Financial Year

Number of patients

(a) National

Number of patients (b) NSW (by state of patient)

1 July 2004 - 30 June 2005

1,404

817

1 July 2005 - 30 June 2006

2,461

1,489

1 July 2006 - 30 June 2007

3,336

1,888

1 July 2007 - 30 June 2008

42,146

28,644

1 July 2008 - 28 February 2009

113,867

81,427

(c)   Electorate level data has not been provided for privacy and confidentiality reasons.

(6)   Since 1 July 2004, there have been 1,907,324 services provided under the program.

There are a range of dental services available. In total there are currently 447 different items under the Medicare Benefits Schedule for dental services. The number of services for individual item numbers can be accessed at: http://www.medicareaustralia.gov.au/provider/medicare/mbs.jsp