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Govt misses opportunity to boost mental health, but Greens decide to back Private Health Bills.
Govt misses opportunity to boost mental health, but Greens decide to back Private Health Bills
Media Release | Spokesperson Bob Brown, Rachel Siewert
Wednesday 24th February 2010, 2:31pm
â¢ Health Insurance
â¢ Health Services
â¢ Mental Health
â¢ Public / Private Health Services
Having previously opposed the Medicare Levy Surcharge, the Greens have now decided to support both it
and the Private Health Insurance Rebate legislation.
The Greens will support the legislation which would see $1.9 billion directed to public hospitals, despite the
Government rejecting a proposal that would have given a $145 million boost to early intervention mental
"The Greens wholeheartedly support delivering over four years $1.9 billion of desperately needed funding
for public hospitals and we will not stand in the way of legislation to do this," said Australian Greens Leader
"But in rejecting our proposal, the Government has missed a huge opportunity to provide vital money for
mental health services.
"$145 million would make a huge impact in the areas of early intervention and community mental health
services that help keep people out of hospital.
"The Greens are supporting the passage of this legislation because we seek to maximise the delivery of
public health money and we are here to represent the best interests of the Australian community," said
Senator Rachel Siewert.
"The Greens will continue to promote sensible and constructive action with our proposals to break Senate
deadlock on major issues like this, the stimulus package, climate change and Youth Allowance."
Erin Farley 0438 376 082 or
Fernando de Freitas 0417 174 302