Good360
MEDIA, JOBS & RESOURCES for the COMMON GOOD
News  |  Policy

ACOSS Hails Means Testing of Private Health Insurance Rebate


Wednesday, 15th February 2012 at 1:53 pm
Lina Caneva
The Australian Council of Social Service, ACOSS, has welcomed the passing of legislation through the House of Representatives that will lead to the means testing of the private health insurance rebate.

Wednesday, 15th February 2012
at 1:53 pm
Lina Caneva


0 Comments


FREE SOCIAL
SECTOR NEWS

 Print
ACOSS Hails Means Testing of Private Health Insurance Rebate
Wednesday, 15th February 2012 at 1:53 pm

The Australian Council of Social Service ACOSS has welcomed the passing of legislation through the House of Representatives that will lead to the means testing of the private health insurance rebate.

"This makes sense in terms of equity and the long term sustainability of our vital health system," ACOSS chief executive Dr Cassandra Goldie said.

"We all want our tax dollars to be used in the most effective way possible – targeted to the services we need as a community, as well as to those that most need it. Having low income earners, who can't afford private health insurance themselves, subsidise the health insurance of those who can afford it is unfair and unsustainable.

"ACOSS has long argued that the rebate disadvantages people on low incomes who can't afford the cost of private health insurance, and diverts vital funding from general public services.

“It is an inefficient use of Federal funds that runs counter to the principles of a universal health system, as well as a fair and equitable tax system.

"We believe that health expenditure needs to be targeted to improving health and access to services for those who are missing out. The reality is that private health is significantly more common for residents of capital cities and the rebate has done nothing to alleviate the structural barrier to affordable and timely health care in rural and regional areas with no or little access to GPs, specialists and after-hours care.

"At the same time, and contrary to popular wisdom, the rebate has failed in its aims to relieve pressure on the public health system. Evidence shows that when people with private insurance have an acute injury or illness, they will attend a publicly funded hospital for care."

The Government reform is expected to save around $2.4 billion over three years.

"The rebate is a luxury we can no longer afford with the growing demands on the health system from our aging population. We have to use public funding wisely, which is why ACOSS is calling for the savings that will be made to be redistributed to those currently missing out on standards of health that others take for granted,” Dr Goldie said.

“We've identified oral health as one of these crucial areas and we'll scrutinise the overall package carefully to evaluate what's been offered in this area.

"ACOSS congratulates parliamentarians for taking this brave move in the national interest.

“We want to ensure this extra money is used to help reduce inequities and improve health outcomes for all Australians." 


Lina Caneva  |  Editor  |  @ProBonoNews

Lina Caneva has been a journalist for more than 35 years. She was the editor of Pro Bono Australia News from when it was founded in 2000 until 2018.


Got a story to share?

Got a news tip or article idea for Pro Bono News? Or perhaps you would like to write an article and join a growing community of sector leaders sharing their thoughts and analysis with Pro Bono News readers?

Get in touch at news@probonoaustralia.com.au

Get more stories like this

FREE SOCIAL
SECTOR NEWS

Write a Reply or Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

Technology can be a weapon against the nation’s most vulnerable

Wendy Williams

Tuesday, 14th May 2019 at 4:29 pm

Social sector demands climate action on the eve of the election

Luke Michael

Friday, 10th May 2019 at 4:40 pm

‘The evidence is in’: Australians want an increase to Newstart

Wendy Williams

Tuesday, 23rd April 2019 at 8:26 am

What community services want: An end to the cuts

Cassandra Goldie

Friday, 12th April 2019 at 6:36 pm

POPULAR

Morrison vows to prioritise NDIS following election win

Luke Michael

Monday, 20th May 2019 at 4:05 pm

Labor gives charities the spotlight in final days of election campaign

Maggie Coggan

Wednesday, 8th May 2019 at 4:57 pm

Guide dogs business venture set to shake up traditional charity model

Maggie Coggan

Monday, 13th May 2019 at 4:11 pm

Community Sector Banking
pba inverse logo
Subscribe Twitter Facebook

Get the social sector's most essential news coverage. Delivered free to your inbox every Tuesday and Thursday morning.

You have Successfully Subscribed!