Calls for Federal Government to keep free dental care for children from low income families

April 21, 2016

KIM LANDERS: Well, as we wait for the federal budget, Tasmanian Independent MP Andrew Wilkie is putting pressure on the Government to keep funding a child dental health scheme. 

The scheme provides free dental treatment for children from low income families, but the Government has yet to confirm whether it's going to keep it. 

Felicity Ogilvie reports from Hobart.

FELICITY OGILVIE: The Child Dental Benefits Schedule allows parents on low incomes to take their children to the dentist. 

But it's only used by 30 per cent of the children around Australia who are eligible.

The Federal Government won't say if it's going to keep the program. 

But Tasmanian Independent MP Andrew Wilkie says the fact the scheme is underutilised is not a reason to get rid of it.

ANDREW WILKIE: Let's not focus on the funding might be there for 3 million, let's focus on the million children who do take advantage of this program. 

You know, a million children a year, a thousand dollars a child, that's a billion dollars going into dental care for members of the community who can least afford to pay for it themselves or for the families that can least afford to pay for it themselves. 




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