The announcement by the Federal Government to drop plans for the Medicare co-payment has been welcomed by Leading Age Services Australia (LASA) as a strong outcome for older Australians, with LASA further endorsing the move to exempt pensioners, veterans and aged care residents.
“Treasurer Hockey’s summation that ‘one of the great challenges we face is that we are an ageing population’ is key to health reform in the very near future and something that central agencies will need to consider adequate funding for,” said LASA CEO, Patrick Reid.
LASA considers the changes announced would go some small way to ensuring continuity of GP services in aged care, something that LASA has spoken at length with to the AMA, government and other stakeholders outlining the challenges of doctors working in age services.
“This change in government position is clear evidence that the Government has listened to the concerns of Leading Age Services and is awakening to the rise of age services as critically important in health”.
“We support the ongoing sustainability of the Medicare system and encourage the Treasurer to see older Australians as a benefit for Australia rather than a fiscal problem to be solved.”
“In this case, the Government has listened to the Age Services sector’s concerns and has provided the best policy outcome possible.”
“The decision also ensures that age service providers are not caught as the tax collector for the government and older Australians can continue to receive the best possible age services, making great sense for aged care recipients and their families.
On behalf of older Australians, this is a good outcome from strong LASA advocacy.