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    Ian Haywood

    The Minister is free to ignore the AMA. It’s difficult to see what the political penalty of this would be for a Labor minister.
    I suspect what happened is a number of practical but tricky questions were raised by the AMA and others. For example, do patients in the scheme forgo rebates for that doctor who enrols them, the whole practice, the region, or all doctors and NPs in Australia?
    If the lattermost, what happens when the patient goes on holiday, or moves house?
    Does the patient need to apply for permission from Medicare to move house?
    If only the doctor/practice, could doctors game the system by claiming the diabetes-care rebate and then swapping the patients with nearby practices? Why not/how would this be stopped?
    If regional, then what are the regions? States, electorates, or GP Divisions?
    What happens if the GP refers them to an endocrinologist, or other specialist? If the specialist can still do FFS, again the system can be gamed by claiming rebates and then referring en masse.


  2. 2


    If ever there was an example of dysfunctional public private partnership, this is it. The ability of a group of providers to stymie a strategy on the basis of financial risk tells me that it is time to rethink the whole Medicare premise. It does not serve the population well. How many people do you know who complain about the lack of bulk-billing availability and the sense of being rushed through a narrowly-focussed consulation with a private practitioner!! When will a health minister grasp the nettle and carry out true system reform that accepts that not all Australians have the same attitude to health but when basic care is needed, it is accessible!


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