Why Cut Money From Australian Health?
The Australian national interest is often sparked by threat to our hip pocket nerve, and so with ongoing discussions of Australian health funding cuts it is no surprise that many of us, especially health practitioners are concerned.
The Australian Medical Association (AMA) proposes that 10 million dollars be cut from our current budget under “Enhanced Primary Care”. For those of you who may not already know, Enhanced Primary Care is the subsection of health care that encompasses all holistic and alternative health modalities. This includes chiropractic care, physio, Chinese medicine and even the radiology required to screen your spine for contraindications to care and ‘ensurance’ of safety.
Under this new proposal all of these visits currently covered by the Australian Government rebate would become out of pocket expenses; and exclusive; to those financially privileged enough to afford them. This then begs the troubling question: will Australians seek treatments beyond those prescribed by their GP or surgeon? Or will healthcare become even more streamlined, doctorate-d and impersonal?
My issues with the proposal come from a number of places; from concern for the future of holistic healthcare, worry for the health and wellbeing of Australian patients and frustration with the Australian Government’s convoluted priorities. We can all acknowledge that the past few months have seen obscene amounts of spending and wastage; from an underwhelming Olympic campaign that totalled over $370million, the failure of the online Census entry and the abandonment of the East-West Link project.
It seems only natural to me that the best investment our Government could make is in great health for all Australians. After all, if we are functioning optimally imagine just how much more proficient our work force would be, how productive our communities, and how empowered we would feel as a whole.