Government unveils its Healthier Medicare package

The Turnbull Government has unveiled proposed reforms to the health system in an attempt to curb the rate of unnecessary hospitalisations.

Key points:

  • New package for those with chronic illness includes allied health and out-of-hospital services
  • New Medicare packages trials offered to 65,000 people
  • Opposition labels announcement "rushed and fairly botched"
  • Turnbull says reforms will reduce inefficiencies in the health system

 

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Health Minister Sussan Ley said the Healthier Medicare package would provide patients suffering from chronic medical conditions with a tailored healthcare package.

Some of the key proposals include:

  • The establishment of "Health Care Homes" to coordinate medical, allied health and out-of-hospital services for patients
  • Improved use of digital health measures for patients
  • Stronger data collection and the creation of a National Minimum Data Set of de-identified information to help measure and benchmark primary health care performance

 

Primary Health Care Advisory Group chair Dr Steve Hambleton said in a report to Ms Ley that the proposal would provide "continuity of care" for patients by initiating a practice where one doctor would coordinate their entire treatment.

Read the full DoH Press Release

Primary Health Care Advisory Group Report: Better Outcomes for people with Chronic and Complex Health Conditions

Related Resources

Sydney Morning Herald Report - Chronically ill patients to receive trial health package

ABC News Report - Medicare plan to hand GPs more control over treatment of chronic illness

Push to rethink the way we provide primary care - Read this report on a recent HARC-sponsored  symposium on the Patient-Centred Medical Home

The patient-centred medical home model: what does it mean for primary health care in NSW?

A model for Australian general practice: the Australian person-centred medical home

Croakey Aricle from Tim Senior Chronic care, equity & Trojan horses: What’s the role of PHI in new Health Care Homes?  "As GP Tim Senior explores in this post, there’s much to recommend the Health Care Homes, or Medical Homes model of care as they’re more widely known. But he says the role of Medibank and focus on private health insurance in the Primary Health Care Advisory Group‘s report on chronic care raises many questions, particularly around equity of access and funding models."

The Commonwealth Fund Blog - Medical Homes May Help Improve Care for People with Mental Health Issues,Tuesday, April 5, 2016By Rose Kleiman, Susan L. Hayes and Clare Churchouse