MRFF link to GP co-payment is a ‘poisoned chalice’ for medical researchers

6 Nov 2014

AMA President, A/Prof Brian Owler, has said that the Government handed Australia’s medical research sector a ‘poisoned chalice’ by making the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) dependent on funding from the pockets of the poorest, sickest, and most vulnerable people in the community through the proposed co-payment for general practice, pathology and radiology services and the $5 cut to the Medicare patient rebate.

“If the Government was truly sincere in its commitment to medical research, it would provide a fairer, untainted way to finance the Fund. It is appalling that a Fund designed to cure diseases and save lives in the future must rely on the chronically ill, the elderly, the poor, and Indigenous Australians paying more for their vital health services today,” A/Prof Owler said.

He said the AMA is calling on health and medical researchers to reject the Government’s attempts to turn them into lobbyists for the MRFF while the Fund remains linked to the Budget cuts to important health services.

Full media release.
AMA TV - A/Prof Brian Owler, AMA TV, 31 October 2014 - Medical Research Fund.