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Wednesday, 16 October 1985
Page: 1309


Senator SIDDONS(12.06) —I want to answer Senator Peter Baume's accusation that there is no matter of principle here. Senator Harradine addressed the point that there is a matter of principle here. Those who have large families who suffer a year of severe illness or those whose families have very large medical expenses not covered by Medicare-for example, chiropractor's expenses-are not subject to any rebate by the Government.


Senator Messner —Why don't you start at zero if there is a principle?


Senator SIDDONS —Because we are concerned about those families and those people who suffer very heavy expenditure in any one year. We are simply suggesting that $1,000 is an unreasonably high threshold.


Senator Peter Baume —What about the principle?


Senator SIDDONS —The principle is acknowledged by the Government. All we are arguing about is the fact that the threshold is unreasonably high and the principle that the Government obviously espouses is not really being effective.