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HEALTH LEGISLATION AMENDMENT BILL (NO. 2) 1986

Order of the Day read for the adjourned debate on the motion of the Minister for Community Services (Senator Grimes)-That this Bill be now read a second time.

Debate resumed.

Senator Walters moved an amendment, viz: At end of motion, add "", but the Senate-

(a) condemns the Government for its latest attack on the private sector by increasing the cost of private hospital insurance, putting it beyond the reach of many ordinary Australians and thereby condemning them to long public hospital queues when they need hospital care;

(b) condemns the Government for its total failure to address the mounting public hospital crisis and the growing number of people on queues for public hospital beds;

(c) notes that under Medicare there are long queues for public hospital beds while there are empty private hospital beds;

(d) expresses its grave concern for the people reliant on private hospital care, such as is provided by the Victorian Bush Nursing Association; and

(e) calls on the Government to make fundamental changes to Medicare to allow people the choice of Medicare cover or private medical and hospital cover, thereby restoring the balance of demand for hospital beds.

Debate continued.

Ordered-That the debate be adjourned till a later hour of the day, and that Senator Powell have leave to continue her speech on the resumption of the debate.