Federal Government abandons Medicare proposals
BILL Shorten's call for the Federal Government to abandon their Medicare changes has had immediate results with Health Minister Sussan Ley scrapping the proposals.
This morning Ms Ley scrapped plans to cut the Medicare rebate by $20 for short visits to the doctor from next Monday, a day after Mr Shorten announced in Ipswich his party would not support the changes in the Senate.
Ms Ley said she was still committed to bringing price signals into Medicare including the revised $5 GP co-payment due to start July 1, but said she would "pause, listen and consult" with the community.
Yesterday Mr Shorten brought the issue into Queensland state election as he campaigned with Ipswich West candidate Jim Madden calling on Campbell Newman to condemn the changes.
The changes would have meant GPs had to spend 10 minutes with patients to attract the standard consultation rebate rather than the six minutes it is currently.
The Government's intervention comes after a fierce backlash against the changes by doctors across the country including the Lockyer Doctors in Gatton.
The Lockyer Doctors launched a petition to federal MP Scott Buchholz with over 700 signatories and said the changes were introduced without consultation to doctors and would reduce their ability to increase their work load in times of high need.