MEDIBANK ENDORSES LEY'S EFFORTS TO TACKLE THE AFFORDABILITY OF HEALTHCARE
Medibank has today welcomed the federal government’s focus on reforming Australia’s healthcare system – and in particular its focus on affordability.
“Medibank applauds the system-wide focus that is being take to reform the healthcare system. One key challenge for the government is to clearly define the role of private health insurance within the wider health system and urgently deliver the policy settings that support it,” Mr Savvides said.
“The Minister has already shown a great willingness to work with the private healthcare industry and it is our hope this positive attitude continues. For our part, we stand ready to assist the Minister with these changes. There is certainly much that can be done to improve the affordability of private healthcare, including the value of private health insurance.
“Like Minister Ley, we see affordability as being a key priority. Our members share with us every day their concern about the cost of healthcare, so we are pleased it is front-and-centre for the Government as well.
“We are pleased that Minister Ley has already moved to address one of our recommendations by bringing together a working group to address the inflated cost of prostheses paid by private patients. This is a great first step toward improving affordability, and an industry working group involving all parties is certainly the right process for driving this complex reform.”
Medibank has recommended a number of other reforms that would improve the transparency, affordability and value of private healthcare, and potentially save up to $3 billion per year. These include:
- the introduction of a standardised minimum coverage product with no restrictions and standardised terminology;
- the publication of accessible price, performance and quality information about hospitals and specialists that consumers can use to help them make important healthcare choices; and
- an end to privately insured patients being asked to pay for services they are already entitled to for free in public hospitals.
“We look forward to further discussions with Minister Ley about these reforms, and to supporting her as she works to implement these and other important reforms in the coming months,” said Mr Savvides.
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