Health organisations are bracing themselves for the budget to be released on the 13th. With the National Commission of Audit outlining how the delay of the rollout of the NDIS, a $15 co-payment for GP visits, and “reviewing” the Medicare benefits scheme will help to get the budget back to surplus. There is concern also that the Australian National Preventive Health Agency is one of the organisations set to lose out under the budget.
Although the move is paradoxical as preventative healthcare can make dramatic budget savings – vaccination for example saved the US $13.5 billion in 2009. Although budget savings should not be the only priority when we consider our healthcare. Most parents would agree that they did not vaccinate their child to save on future healthcare costs, but were most likely motivated by their desire to save their child the suffering of a preventable illness and the possible long term effects of such an illness- the health and well being of their child being their utmost priority.
This is the opposite of what we see with the argument to slash funding for preventative healthcare with our lives, our health and our wellbeing being reduced to a monetary value. Slashing of funding may help the government get back to a budget surplus although what is the human cost?