Aussie doctors urge major parties to increase general practitioner funding

Source: Xinhua| 2019-04-12 14:48:41|Editor: Xiaoxia
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CANBERRA, April 12 (Xinhua) -- Peak groups representing Australia's doctors have called for a 1-billion-Australian dollar (712.5 million U.S. dollar) investment in general practice (GP) care.

The Australian Medical Association (AMA) and Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) have both issued their demands from both major parties for May's general election, topped by greater investment in Medicare, Australia's publicly-funded universal healthcare system.

"Right at the top of the list is the call for significant investment in general practice," Tony Bartone, president of the AMA, told News Corp Australia on Friday.

Harry Nespolon, president of the RACGP, said, "The last thing I ever want to do is turn away a patient because they cannot afford it, but if something doesn't change soon, that is going to become a reality."

Bill Shorten, leader of the opposition Australian Labor Party (ALP), has been critical of the incumbent Liberal-National party coalition (LNP)'s handling of Medicare.

The ALP has not announced its broad Medicare policy for this election but has promised to inject 2.3 billion Australian dollars into the scheme to fund cancer treatment for Australians.

"We want to make sure that our frontline of healthcare services, our GPs, are properly resourced," Shorten said while launching his campaign on Thursday.

Australians will head to the polls for the election on May 18.