Most Medicare offices in the electorate of Whitlam have been co-located with Centrelink Offices. Only one Centrelink office does not have a Medicare co-located – it’s the one in Dapto.
Public transport links between Dapto and other Medicare offices are extremely limited - Warrawong, Bowral and Shellharbour all involve significant travel times, or multiple buses or trains. This is a barrier to some families getting access to the Medicare services they need. We know this because census data from 2011 shows suburbs around Dapto like Koonawarra, Brownsville, and Penrose (aka Avondale) have significantly greater rates of households that don’t own a car. In fact they are much higher than the national average. Accessing Medicare can be a big problem!
Everyone should be able to access Medicare - and co-locating a Centrelink within Dapto makes sense to help locals get the service we need and deserve with a low impact on the budget.
We call on the Minister for Social Services to co-locate Medicare services within the Dapto Centrelink.