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AMA’s Town Hall public health meetings get underway

AMA Tasmania’s clear the hospital logjam online town hall meeting will be held Tuesday evening, kicking off the next phase of campaign. 

The first of a series of state-based virtual town hall meetings to highlight public health in the election environment will be held from 7pm to 8.30pm this coming Tuesday in Tasmania.  

Former Tasmanian premier and AMA Tasmania CEO Lara Giddings will moderate the meeting which will focus on the future of public health in Tasmania. AMA President Dr Omar Khorshid will also participate. 

Sustainable funding of the health system is of paramount importance to the AMA, whether in the acute or primary health sectors. 

In the lead up to election day on 21 May, the AMA will seek to gain the views of all political parties and candidates on the issue of a 50:50 funding agreement between Federal and state governments for public hospitals, as well as priorities for creating a modern Medicare.  

The AMA has invited a representative from each party to speak for five minutes on their party’s view of the 50:50 funding agreement for public hospitals, and what they will do to support GPs should their party win government.  

Others invited to attend include members of the public, union representatives, media, and consumer health advocates who may speak of their own public hospital experiences. 

When Dr Khorshid was in Tasmania recently as part of the AMA’s Clear the Hospital Logjam Campaign, he met with representatives of the major parties in Bass and Braddon, seeking a commitment to support this more equitable funding agreement. 
   
Throughout the campaign the AM has heard heart-breaking first-hand stories from patients and healthcare workers about the realities of our public hospitals, and the real impact of our public hospital funding crisis. 

The current funding arrangements are not sufficient to meet the ever-growing demand in our hospitals.  

AMA analysis shows that a lack of funding to expand capacity and improve performance in hospitals is the root cause behind ambulance ramping, bed block in emergency and delays in elective surgery within our public hospitals. 
   
Similarly, general practice in Tasmania is reaching a crisis point with over 150 vacancies for GPs across the state, GP practices closing their books, earlier than planned retirements, extended wait times for appointments and fewer doctors willing to become a GP. 

The Tasmania town hall meeting is open to the public and all AMA members. You can register here

Town halls are also being planned in the other states and territories. Contact your branch office for details.  

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