Record high Medicare bulk billing in Pearce

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More Pearce residents are visiting their doctor without having to pay a cent, with new data showing a record GP bulk billing rate for the September quarter.

Member for Pearce, Christian Porter MP, said the data for the first quarter of the 2018-19 financial year has the GP bulk billing rate at a record 91.4 per cent – Labor only managed 79.8 per cent in this same period in 2012-13.

“Over 250,000 services were bulk billed in this period, which is 100,000 more than when Labor was last in government.

“Our commitment to Medicare is rock solid and we will continue to ensure Australian patients are supported more than ever.”

Mr Porter said Medicare funding is at record levels and the comprehensive data shows that patients do not have to reach for their wallet for nearly 9 out of every 10 visits to their local GP.

“Medicare spending is guaranteed and increasing every year from approximately $25 billion in 18-19, to $26 billion in 19-20, $27 billion in 2020-21 and $29 billion in 2021-22 to support healthcare for every Australian.

“We ended the Medicare freeze which Labor introduced.

“This indexation of the Medicare Benefits Schedule, which the Government reintroduced in the 2017-18 Budget, is delivering an additional $1.5 billion for Medicare services through to 2021-22.

“And we will continue to provide new Medicare support for patients.”

Additionally, Mr Porter said that last month it was announced that for the first time, those Australians with severe eating disorders will now be able to access a comprehensive treatment plan under Medicare.

“Patients will be able to access up to 40 Medicare-funded psychological sessions and up to 20 dietetic sessions each year from November 1,” Mr Porter said.

“The $110.7 million investment into the first dedicated Medicare item for eating disorders will benefit around 30,000 people each year living with these debilitating disorders, helping them to get better and stay out of hospital.

“These investments in Medicare can only be delivered by a strong economy, which under a Labor Government would be put at risk.”