New reports confirm key role of GPs as leaders in primary care
Two new health reports released this week – General practice activity in Australia 2012-13 and A decade of Australian general practice 2002-03 to 2012-13 - confirm the key role of GPs as the leaders in primary care in Australia.
Released by the Bettering the Evaluation and Care of Health (BEACH) program, the reports show that the Australian community is relying more and more on highly skilled GPs for quality health care and advice.
AMA President, Dr Steve Hambleton, said that the reports show clearly that GPs are the preferred first port of call for Australians seeking the best possible health care, and demand is growing as the population ages and more people are experiencing chronic and complex conditions.
"When Australians are sick or want trusted health advice, they want to see a GP," Dr Hambleton said.
"GPs are integral to keeping patients with chronic disease healthy and out of hospital, but current Medicare-funded chronic disease management arrangements are too limited, are difficult for patients to access, and involve considerable red tape and bureaucracy.
"The AMA believes that the Government needs to reform current Medicare arrangements targeting chronic disease.
"GPs must be given greater support and scope to provide access to multidisciplinary care and support services for patients with chronic and complex disease," Dr Hambleton said.