Healthcare in Australia - Patients deserve better

You can gauge the priorities of a person and a government by the things they talk about and the places they visit. After five months this Prime Minister has told Australia where his priorities are and where they are not.


After five months we have not had one serious speech from this Prime Minister and not one serious announcement in the areas of regional Australia and in the area of health.

He could be forgiven if he had a bunch of ministers who had these issues in hand but, clearly, he doesn't. We have a health minister who thinks she can review her way to history.

We have a regional health minister who, by her own admission, is irrelevant to every big decision that is being made in the health portfolio. And we have a human services minister who, when he is not on his way to China, he is floating plans to privatise Medicare. These are not policies for the health system.

He could be forgiven if everything was going well. But it is not. After $57 billion worth of cuts to the health system we are starting to see the results: waiting times in our emergency departments are blowing out to unacceptable levels, costs are going up and the services are getting worse. It is time to this Prime Minister to focus on the things that matter.

Privatising Medicare and increasing co-payments is not a policy for health and the people of Australia deserve more from this Prime Minister.