Media release - Butler calls on new Health Minister to take action for the Southside

Low bulk billing rates and high private health premiums are among the challenges for new Health Minister Greg Hunt, Terri Butler said.
"I congratulate Mr Hunt on being sworn in as Health Minister. Now he must immediately get to work on facing health challenges facing my constituents here on the Southside," Terri Butler said.
"Today, I have written to the incoming Health Minister, Greg Hunt, making plain my concern about the Turnbull government's cuts to health, and calling for action.
"The Turnbull Government’s health cuts are hurting Southsiders.
"The AMA has again called on the Government to get rid of the freeze on the Medicare Benefits Schedule.
"Malcolm Turnbull and Greg Hunt need to admit they were wrong and undo the freeze.
“On the latest figures, the electorate of Griffith’s GP bulk billing rate is a woeful 68.1%, placing us 141st of 150 electorates.
“Our overall Medicare bulk billing rate is even lower, at 66.8% - 138th of 150 electorates.
"As a result of being unable to access a bulk billing service as many as eight percent of people in the Brisbane South Primary Health Network will choose to delay a visit to the doctor, or worse still choose to avoid seeing a doctor at all.
“In the electorate of Griffith, this means up to 13 000 people will be at risk of compromised health care.
Ms Butler also expressed concern about the rising cost of private health insurance.
“The latest figures from Private Healthcare Australia indicate that 61.4% of people in Griffith are covered by private health insurance," Terri Butler said.
"Australians are paying 18 per cent more for private health insurance under the Liberals.
“This is putting many Australians, including Southsiders, in a position where they are no longer able to afford private health insurance.
“Australians shouldn’t have to pay the price for the Turnbull Government’s chaos. It’s critical that the Minister acts quickly to properly fund our healthcare system," Terri Butler said.
WEDNESDAY, 25 JANUARY, 2017

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