Date: 11 May 2017
The 2017-18 Federal Budget is the first step toward reinvesting in general practice and preventive health with the gradual thawing of elements of the Medicare indexation freeze. From 1 July this year, the general practice bulk billing incentives will be indexed, with consultations to follow next financial year. Unfortunately, enhanced general practice care items (e.g. GP Management Plans, Team Care Arrangements, and Health Assessments) will not indexed until July 2020.
Among the various Health measures, the Budget also announced:
- delay of the Health Care Homes trial, confirming the government has listened to the RACGP’s concerns regarding the model
- continued commitment to the MBS Review
- retention of the Indigenous Health Incentive and the procedural general practice grants programs
- funding to maintain or increase access to mental health services.