Tag Archives: private health insurance

JOHN MENADUE. The unfairness and waste of private health insurance and the threat to Medicare.

History is repeating itself. Medicare was created by the Whitlam government because of the abject failure of private health insurance or, as it was then called voluntary health insurance.  As a result of the growth of private health insurance (PHI) … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. Private Health Insurance vs dental care.

Australian health would be much improved if the $11 billion subsidy for private health insurance was abolished and part of those funds allocated to universal dental care within Medicare.  

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JOHN MENADUE. Who said this and when.

Private health insurance is unfair and inefficient. It was because of this that the Whitlam Government established Medibank/Medicare.  

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JOHN MENADUE. Preferential treatment for private patients in public hospitals in NSW.

See below a poster from NSW Health which is being displayed in public hospitals in NSW. Readers may be interested to comment. Two things interest me. The first is that the advertisement infers that if you have private health insurance … Continue reading

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IAN McAULEY. The Mounting Case For A Royal Commission Into Banks And Insurance Companies

An overwhelming majority of Australians support a Royal Commission into the finance sector. Ian McAuley explains why. We’re paying too much for a bloated financial service sector.A prominent example is Australia’s largest health insurer, Medibank Private, which in the last … Continue reading

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IAN McAULEY. Problems of Private Health Insurance.

The PHI industry continues to make two invalid assumptions about private health care.  The first is that governments are intrinsically high cost and bureaucratic and that the private sector is unquestionably more efficient. This is patently not true. The least … Continue reading

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IAN McAULEY. A Royal Commission into banking and the private health insurance industry.

In this election campaign the issue that triggered a double dissolution – restoration of the Australian Building and Construction Commission – has hardly scored a mention. That contrasts with the 1974 double dissolution election, called by the Whitlam Government in … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. Health principles and policies for the next parliament.

Thanks to Medicare introduced over 40 years ago, despite bitter conservative opposition, we have one of the best health systems in the world. It is sustainable but we waste over $20 b per annum. There are threats and problems that … Continue reading

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John Menadue. The health insurance lobby at work at the expense of the public interest.

For many years, Ian McAuley and I have been highlighting the damage to our health system and the Australian economy as a result of the $11 b. p.a. subsidy to the private health insurance industry.  We have highlighted the following … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Part 2. How we deliver healthcare is as important as the funding of healthcare. Medicare has degenerated into a payments system.

In Part 1 I focussed on the importance of improving the delivery of health care and not just funding. In Part 2 I will focus on specific areas where costs should be reduced.   Part 2 Getting costs down The … Continue reading

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Stephen Duckett. Health in 2016: a cheat sheet on hospitals, Medicare and private health insurance.

We start 2016 as we started 2015 – with big challenges for the health system and uncertainty as to how governments will meet them. The health care headaches in 2016 are, in fact, the same ones we faced a decade … Continue reading

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Ian McAuley, Jennifer Doggett, John Menadue. Private Health Insurance companies are price takers. Prices are set by doctors and hospitals.

Repost from 22/10/2015 On Tuesday the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) released its  report on private health insurance. Private health insurance (PHI) was also in the news a day later with the standing down of the CEO of Medibank Pte, … Continue reading

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An Open Letter to the Minister for Health concerning Private Health Insurance.

19 November 2015  Hon Sussan Ley M.P., Minister for Health, Parliament House, ACT 2600 Dear Minister (I have signed this letter on my behalf and also on behalf of the people listed below. I will be posting this ‘open letter’ … Continue reading

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John Dwyer. Wasting precious health dollars.

  In the last eighteen months our coalition government has repeatedly warned that the rate at which we are increasing health related expenditure is unsustainable. The attempt to extract a co-payment from Australians visiting their GP was justified using this … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Our health system is sustainable.

To justify an increase in the GST, Premier Baird has joined the long list of conservatives who keep telling us that our health system is unsustainable. Earlier the Treasurer, Ministers for Health and the Commission of Audit warned us in … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Facts on the $11b per annum private health insurance industry subsidy.

The Minister for Health and Ageing, Sussan Ley has said she wants to canvas community and expert views on PHI (private health insurance). If she does consult the community on this issue that will be a welcome change, for consideration … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Health Policy Reform: Part 2 – Why reform is difficult. Health ministers are in office but not in power.

Policy Series. In Part 1 on health policy reform I outlined the main areas where health reform is necessary. In Part 2 I examine the reasons why I think health reform is so hard. In part 3 I will consider … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Health Policy Reform: Part 1 – Why reform is needed

Policy Series I will be posting three articles on health policy. This article outlines the priority areas where reform is necessary. Part 2 will explain why reform is so difficult but not impossible. Part 3 will be about processes and … Continue reading

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Ian McAuley. If the government wants price signals, it should stop supporting health insurance.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has declared the Medicare co-payment proposals “dead, buried and cremated”, but two related ideas behind it live on: Medicare is becoming “unaffordable” and our universal health system should morph into a program reserved for the poor. … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Private health insurance and funding a Medicare Dental Scheme.

In this blog I have written extensively about the damage that private health insurance (PHI) is doing in Australia. We are sleep-walking into a US style health disaster. If people want private health insurance, that is their right, but I … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Health Insurance – here we go again!

The Health Minister, Sussan Ley has just announced a 6.2% increase in private health insurance premiums.  Increases of this order happen almost every year. Since the Howard government introduced the rebate on private health insurance in 1999, the cost of … Continue reading

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John Dwyer. Commentary on John Menadue’s blogs on the barriers to health policy reform in Australia.  (Part 1)

As I suspected  would be the case with many readers who enjoy “Pearls and Irritations”, I experienced in equal measure, satisfaction and frustration as I absorbed John  Menadue’s informed and insightful analysis of the problems that beset our health system … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Health Part 1 – what can we learn from overseas health systems?

This article was initially posted in June last year. There has recently been quite a number of articles, including in The Conversation, about what we can learn from overseas health systems. Before looking at these international comparisons, it is worth … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Health Policy Reform: Part 2 – Why reform is difficult. Health ministers are in office but not in power.

In Part 1 on health policy reform I outlined the main areas where health reform is necessary. In Part 2 I examine the reasons why I think health reform is so hard. In part 3 I will consider ways in … Continue reading

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John Menadue. The dog’s breakfast in co-payments has got worse.

The government is trying to dump its co-payment mess on to doctors. If doctors decide not to absorb the reductions in the Medicare rebate, many will pass it on to patients and dramatically reduce bulk billing. What a mess! In … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Why health reform is so hard. It’s about power.

You may be interested in this repost.  John Menadue.   I have been actively involved in health policy for over twenty years. Throughout that period Medicare has been the shining light that has well and truly stood the test of … Continue reading

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How does Australia’s health system compare.

The Treasurer, the Minister for Health and the Commission of Audit have warned us in one way or another that the Australian health service is unsustainable, particularly with an ageing population. The Treasurer tells us that the age of entitlement … Continue reading

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Ian McAuley. Pay for a GP visit.

The Commission of Audit’s proposal to charge a $5 or $6 fee for “bulk-billed” GP services has little to commend it. But that doesn’t justify knee-jerk outrage from medical and consumer groups, or from the Labor Opposition, for there is … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Taxes – public or private

The Commission of Audit has recommended that a Medicare levy surcharge be applied to individuals earning more than $88,000 a year and $176,000 for families. This is designed to force high income earners to take out private health insurance. This … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Citizenship and shared experience.

The recent decision by the NSW Government to evict pensioners and low-income tenants from the Rocks in Sydney highlighted for me the importance of mixed communities and shared experiences. We all benefit in society when we have shared experiences. We … Continue reading

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