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Health Care costs going up...up...up.



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JULIA GILLARD M.P.

MEDIA RELEASE

Shadow Minister for Health

HEALTH CARE COSTS GOING UP… UP… UP

CPI figures released today show that the costs of health care for Australian families are rising fast, putting further pressure on Australian families.

Health costs rose 7.5% in the past year according to the ABS - more than double the rate of inflation.

The cost of hospital and medical services rose 5.2% in the June quarter and more than 10.3% in the past 12 months - more than three and a half times the rate of inflation.

These figures show that because the Howard Government has allowed Medicare to erode, the burden of paying for health care is increasingly falling on Australian families.

The Australian Medical Association, health experts and consumer groups all agree that the Government’s Medicare package will lead to even higher out-of-pocket costs for Australian families.

Families who earn more than $32,300 are not eligible for concession cards. Doctors who agree to participate in the Government’s scheme will be allowed to charge these families uncapped co-payments.

Everywhere you look, health care costs are going up under John Howard.

Not content with being the highest taxing Government in Australia’s history, John Howard and Peter Costello are making Australians pay more and more for their health care.

Peter Costello may not be “comfortable” with some doctors now having different queues for the rich and the poor, but his Government’s changes to Medicare will inevitably lead Australia further down the path towards the Americanisation of our health system.

For further information contact:

Jamie Snashall on 0407 438 746 Wednesday 23 July 2003