Governments needs to ‘recognise and reward quality general practice’ says AMA President

24 Aug 2017

In his second National Press Club Address AMA President, Dr Michael Gannon, this week praised GPs for delivering high quality care under tremendous pressure.

Dr Gannon outlined how GPs remain the most cost effective aspect in Australia’s health system, yet there is more that the government could do.

“The decision to progressively lift the Medicare freeze on GP services is a step in the right direction. But the Government needs to do much more to recognise and reward quality general practice.”

He provided a ‘to do’ list for the government, outlining that strong primary care, properly resourced public hospitals, and a complementary private hospital sector underpinned by a stable private health insurance industry were all needed to support general practice.

Dr Gannon outlined that in particular more needs to be done in regards to the Health Care Homes trial.

“Significant questions also remain over the adequacy of funding for the trial, given the Government is asking GPs to do more for patients, but with no additional investment. It will be a number of years before we learn what impact the trial has had for patients, health costs, and whether it relieves pressure on our hospital system,” he said.

“General practice can’t wait that long. It is already under pressure and needs new investment now.”

Full speech