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    John M

    While public listing of fees is a useful step forward, consumers have little purchase power. The specialists control entry into the speciality and hence can control fees. They are also free to choose where they hang their shingle. Hence you find a 100 psychiatrists in the LGA of Mosman (pop. 32,500) and none/zero/zip in the LGA of Blacktown (pop. 330,000). Its a provider driven model and it is contributing to poor health outcomes across Australia – not just in the oft cited rural and remote.

    I believe that making all MBS data at sub-regional level available in a timely manner is the most powerful tool to drive policy change. At present you need the CIA working for you to access MBS data at the level that can inform policy decision making and inform community debate. That level might be possibly postcode and SA 2 level depending on the item number concerned.

    It is policy change that will bring about more equitable and affordable access to specialists in Australia.


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