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Speak up to save Medicare

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Richard Di Natale 14 May 2014


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The announcement of a $7 GP co-payment, increased co-payments for medicines and billions ripped out of hospitals in the Abbott Government’s first budget has confirmed what Australians have feared.  The Abbott Government is on a warpath and Medicare is the target.

The government’s assault on Medicare, one of the great Australian success stories, shows that the government really doesn’t understand the fundamental problems in Australia’s health system and is more committed to its brutal agenda to make it harder for ordinary people.

From today’s budget, the government have effectively decided that when it comes to your health, your credit card is much more important than your Medicare card.

The Greens believe that your health should never be determined by your bank balance and that’s why we are standing up for Medicare and will fight to protect it.

If you believe that we should be looking at ways of building up Medicare, have your voice heard by sending a letter to the editor of your newspaper telling them why.

Newspapers generally will not publish Letters to the Editor without your name, address and a phone number being provided.

Some points you might want to include in your letter:

  • The government’s assault on Medicare, one of the great Australian success stories, shows that the government really doesn’t understand the fundamental problems in Australia’s health system and is more committed to its brutal agenda to make it harder for ordinary people.
  • The announcement of a $7 GP co-payment, increased co-payments for medicines and billions ripped out of hospitals in the Abbott Government’s first budget is an attempt to steer Australia towards a two-tiered American style system where many people simply can’t afford basic treatment. It is not about balancing the books and it’s not about improving our health.
  • The story being spun by The Abbott Government is that health costs are spiralling out of control but in reality spending has increased only slightly as a proportion of GDP over the last decade. This small increase has nothing to do with unnecessary GP visits and is primarily a result of improving medical technology leading to better investigations and treatments.
  • The fight over Medicare is a battle over what kind of country we want to be. Governing is about priorities and this cruel government is choosing to save money by making it harder for people to see a doctor instead of axing ridiculous subsidies to the fossil fuel industry.
  • When the size of people’s wallets has a say in their ability to access care then the government is failing the community. Rather than looking for ways to reduce the barriers that are keeping Australians from getting medical care, the Abbott Government is actually considering ways to increase costs.
  • We should be preserving and strengthening Medicare. In a time when out-of-pocket costs are already skyrocketing, this budget hits disadvantaged Australians hardest and hits them where it hurts – their ability to access medical care.

The list of Letters Editors is below - click on the email address to open up a new email to send.

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