True “Reform” of the Practice of Medicine

The Wilko Report for Tuesday Feb 26th, 2013

True “Reform” of the Practice of Medicine

Since 2007, the Federal Government has thrown the word “Reform”  around as much as it has broadcast our hard earned tax dollars ( as well as money borrowed Wan, Yen, Euros and anything else  they can clutch at) into the aether.
“Reform” is spoken of as though it is all good, but the word literally means re- shaping – improvement is not inherent. An opportunity presents itself for our profession, if only our colleagues have enough “gumption” to rear up and slay the dragon of bureaucracy that is slowly destroying them. The ADF has sent a questionnaire to doctors seeking to quantify the worth ( if any) of assorted bureaucratic confections that are trying to stick their beaks into the way we practice.
There are 8 bureaucracies in the list:

The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency AHPRA
Medicare Locals
The Australian Health Workforce Authority (AHWA)
The Australian Commission for Safety and Quality in Health Care (ACSQH)
The Independent Hospital Pricing Authority  (IHPA)
GP Superclinics (GPSC)
Personally controlled  Electronic Health Record (PCEHR)
National Health Performance Authority (NHPA)

The cost to the  taxpayer of these mysterious arms of government is staggering. The PCEHR for example has been a total flop, with only about 50,000 patients signed up in its first year ( against a  projected 500,000) at a cost of $ 1 billion. The efficient state medical, many or all of which were self funding, have been sidelined. Medical registration cost have tripled or quadrupled, which must inevitably be recouped from patients. All the others, many totally irrelevant to a sick patient, are expensive consumers of taxpayers money, all founded on the ‘King Canute’ -like, forlorn dream,
that Canberra paper shufflers can, by rule and regulation, improve the health of anyone in the Commonwealth. The amount of money squandered on these effete  groups ( not one of whom will be driving the ambulance that picks you out of a car wreck or holds the scalpel that saves your wife and child at a 3 am Caeserean  section) is  a national scandal. And the list does not include any of the conduits for bottomless amounts paid out on Aboriginal Health for no apparent gain ( if we go by the appalling longevity statistics for Aborigines.
Whoever forms our next government must sack the  lot of these bodies – they are but pimples on the rump of progress, and ones we cannot afford.

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