Shayne Neumann MP
Federal Member for Blair

Australian Labor
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CELEBRATING AUSTRALIA’S HEALTH CARE SYSTEM WITH THE ANNIVERSARY OF MEDICARE

01/02/2017

Health care professionals and residents across Ipswich and the Somerset Region are marking the anniversary of the introduction of Medicare – an occasion which changed the nature of health care in this country.

Thirty three years ago (1 February 1984) Medicare commenced under the Labor Hawke Government, ensuring that every Australian could access quality health care no matter their circumstances.

Federal member for Blair Shayne Neumann said that it is timely to reflect on the role of Medicare in making our health system what it is today.

“Medicare is the heart and soul of our universal health care system and the envy of many countries around the world,” Mr Neumann said.

“Medicare ensures people can access life-saving treatment when they need it. Last year around 21 million Australians accessed Medicare services – including GP visits, vital tests and scans, and hospital treatments.

“Without Medicare, many local people would be facing substantial medical expenses or have to skip treatment altogether.

“I am proud of Labor’s history in introducing Medicare and Labor will always fight to protect Medicare.

“This anniversary is also a reminder of the need to ensure that access to health care is determined by an individual’s Medicare card – not their credit card.

“We don’t want our health care system to go down the path of America’s, where an individual’s capacity to pay determines whether they get the treatment they need.

“Malcolm Turnbull can give Medicare the ultimate birthday present by dropping his cuts which will see bulk billing drop and residents in Ipswich and the Somerset Region pay more.”