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Shadow Health Minister Peter Dutton today said Tuesday’s budget was likely to include a “big spend” in health to try to mask the Rudd Labor Government’s failure to honour its election promises.

“Mr Rudd will try to divert attention from his failures and broken promises in health with a headline announcement of new spending,” Mr Dutton said.

“Mr Rudd promised to ‘fix’ hospitals by June 2009. The Prime Minister has failed and he will try to create a diversion in this Budget – that’s my prediction.”

Mr Dutton said the Rudd Government had been leaking the bad news in health, hoping it would be forgotten on budget night and possibly overshadowed by some big commitment to spend on health and hospitals.

“Australians should not fall for it.”

“Kevin Rudd and Health Minister Nicola Roxon intend to break their word not to change the 30 per cent rebate for private health insurance, they intend to break their word not to alter the Medicare Safety Net and their budget leaks indicate that consumers will be hit with extra costs in other areas of health such as pathology.”

Mr Dutton said the Rudd Labor Government made it look as though only the “wealthy” would be hit by the budget measures or those earning over $150,000.

“But I warn Australians, everyone will pay a price for the reckless actions of this government – those with private insurance, those forced to drop out of private insurance and those relying on public hospital treatment.”

Media Contact: John Wiseman 0429 983 618

Posted in: Media Releases
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