Newspaper article The Observer (Gladstone, Australia)

GP Says Rudd's $632M Health Plan to Fail

Newspaper article The Observer (Gladstone, Australia)

GP Says Rudd's $632M Health Plan to Fail

Article excerpt

Byline: Kieran Moran

A LOCAL GP believes the Federal Government's plan to spend $632 million to address doctor shortages is ill-advised and likely to fail.

Dr Stephen Rigby said he fears for the future of general practices and for the future of patients.

"The system has been rolled out like the failed insulation scheme with absolutely no thought behind it," he said.

"There has been no formulation of the proposed model structure with constant erosion of primary health-care models."

Experts say Australia will face a shortfall of 3000 GPs over coming years, as well as around 1200 specialists.

"There is currently 7000 GPs in Australia. The Rudd Government's plan to set up clinics is admirable, however, that is just to set up clinics and not for chronic health problems," Dr Rigby said.

"If we could invest that money into primary care, GPs could then make a significant impact on chronic disease."

The Federal Government plan is to spend $632 million to address severe doctor shortages across Australia by boosting general practitioner and specialist training. …

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