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Thursday, 10 December 1998
Page: 1632

Debate resumed from 8 December, on motion by Senator Minchin:

That the bills be now read a second time.

upon which Senator Lees had moved by way of an amendment:

Omit all words after "That", substitute:

"the Senate:

(a) notes the evidence provided to the Community Affairs Legislation Committee that the rebate scheme will not take the pressure off public hospitals and is an inefficient and inequitable use of public funds;

(b) resolves that the bill not be read a second time; and

(c) calls on the Government to:

(i) introduce a means test to restrict eligibility for the rebate to hospital insurance for people on low incomes;

(ii) implement a review process to evaluate the rebate scheme against defined outcome measures;

(iii) require health insurance funds to achieve improved performance outcomes; and

(iv) address the key areas of need in the public health sector, including coordinated care for older Australians; waiting lists in public hospitals; public dental health services; rural health services; and the health care needs of indigenous Australians."