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    This isn’t just a problem that is caused by race, it’s also a big problem if you have a health problem that the health system doesn’t handle well or the doctor doesn’t know about, or if you want to pursue a course of treatment that the doctor doesn’t like (even if it’s evidence based) or there is no better alternative.

    If you’re a patient like this, you have to fight for everything, and since you’re fighting against a system in which doctors seem to believe that it’s better to do nothing, or even stop something that is helping, so that you fit in with their beliefs, that’s a pretty much impossible task.

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    Dr Lawton alleges that there is discrimination in denying Gurrumul the option of liver transplant on the basis that because he is Aboriginal, his liver disease is related to alcohol.

    There is further discrimination here, as people with alcohol-related disease are entitled to excellent health care too. Our society in NT is drenched in alcohol, and people who develop health-related issues are not to blame for this.

    A fairer health system would provide equitable care without discriminating on the baiss of race or the underlying cause of disease.


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