06 May, 2013
The Gillard Government has again failed to provide any long term solution to funding for chemotherapy services.
The Government’s supposed funding ‘boost’ is reported to start in July, but will cease in December 2013, providing no certainty for patients, clinicians or providers.
Despite a Senate Inquiry that is due to report imminently and an undertaking in November last year to look at the ‘cost of delivering vital chemotherapy services’, Minister Plibersek is today going to announce another review.
Shadow Health Minister Peter Dutton said the Government had all of last year to resolve the issue, but failed to do so.
“Minister Plibersek’s inability to resolve or make a decision on funding for chemotherapy services is typical of the chaos and dysfunction that infects the Gillard Government,” Mr Dutton said.
“Vulnerable patients requiring these services do not need the stress of being caught in the middle of a stoush over funding that continues to drag on. This should have been a priority for the Government and it should have been resolved last year.
“Minister Plibersek needs to explain what the Government has been doing in its negotiations and why patients and clinicians have to wait for another review.
“The Government wasn’t able to negotiate an outcome over the last Christmas and New Year period, so the Minister needs to explain how negotiations will be undertaken when the interim funding ceases at the end of this December. The Government will also be in caretaker mode prior to the September election further hindering an outcome,” Mr Dutton said.
Media contact: Tom Fleming 0437 250 045