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No choice for Gilmore residents in cheaper local GP visits.



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Press Releases

Johanna Gash Member for Gilmore

13 September 2004

No choice for Gilmore residents in cheaper local GP visits

Only the Coalition's plan to strengthen Medicare can give all Gilmore residents access to more affordable visits to their preferred family doctor, local member Joanna Gash said today. "Unlike Labor, our plan to strengthen Medicare covers every one of the GPs in Gilmore, so local residents are not forced to change from their preferred GP to access the new support that's available," Joanna Gash said. "It is important that our community, in particular families and older people, are able to stay with their local doctor, who they know and who knows their medical history. Sadly, under Labor's proposal older Australians would be forced to change doctors if they wanted to access Labor's rebate". "Many older residents in Gilmore have worked out something of a set routine with their medical care and will be severely disrupted if they switch doctors. Under the Coalition's plan, the rebate for all GP services will be increased from 85 per cent to 100 per cent of the Medicare Schedule Fee." For a standard 15-minute surgery consultation, the saving will be $4.50. Where the consultation is bulkbilled, this increase will be paid to the doctor. "This initiative will apply to services provided in GPs' surgeries, after-hours, home and aged care facility visits, and services provided by GPs to their patients in a hospital. GPs providing services as Local Medical Officers to eligible veterans and war widows will be entitled to payment at 115 per cent of the Medicare fee plus the Veterans' Access Payment."

"Only by building an even stronger economy can we afford to pay for the initiatives that are fundamental to our way of life. It's not just about keeping interest rates low, but ensuring we can afford to provide the

services that are fundamental to our way of life" "This is further evidence of how we are strengthening the Medicare safety net and working to increase the number of doctors that offer bulk-billing services in our local area. Only the Howard Government has demonstrated in it's policy that they understand the need for the community, particularly older Australians, to stay with their local GP," Mrs Gash said. Press Releases