General practice highlighted in AMA Budget submission
AMA President, Dr Michael Gannon, said that the appointment of Greg Hunt as Health Minister provides the Government with the perfect opportunity to change direction on health policy, and to consign any links to the disastrous 2014-15 Health budget to history.
Launching the AMA’s Pre-Budget Submission 2017-18, Dr Gannon said the key for the Government and the Health Minister is to look at all health policies as investments in a healthier and more productive population. Key proposals related to general practice include Medicare indexation, funding for the Health Care Home, medical workforce and training as well as palliative and aged care.
“In this Pre-Budget Submission, the AMA is urging the Government to invest strategically in key areas of health that will deliver great benefits – in economic terms and with health outcomes – over time.
“The first task of the new Minister must be to lift the freeze on Medicare patient rebates, which is harming patients and doctors. Primary care and prevention are areas where the Government can and should make greater investment.
“General practice, in particular, is cost-effective and proven to keep people well and away from more expensive hospital care. It was pleasing to hear Minister Hunt use his first health media conference to declare that he wanted to be the Health Minister for GPs.
“In this submission, the AMA provides the Government with affordable, targeted, and proven policies that will contribute to a much better Budget bottom line in coming years.”