Hospital designs and practices were set in concrete many decades ago.
For many patients, hospital may not be the best place for their care.
The Commonwealth is telling the states to fix their own hospital budget problems, as though state governments can simply find savings from other areas.
Health-care costs are rising, driven by expensive developments in treatments, more demanding populations and rising national wealth. We need to change the financing system to meet this challenge.
Clinicians prioritise patients based on the urgency of their treatment. But there’s more to it than that.
Waiting for emergency care, specialist appointments and "elective" procedures is not only inconvenient and frustrating, it can also be painful and detrimental to your health and well-being.
Patients often rely on their GP to make the choice of specialist for them through the referral process with little or no discussion of prices.
Why is it so difficult to find out exactly how much it's going to cost to have that suspicious mole removed or to be admitted to hospital for that colonoscopy or hip replacement?
The solution is not necessarily more of the same, or more funding.
In a time of growing populations, hospitals must guarantee access, ensure quality, minimise the chances of anything going wrong, and do it all within the available budget. So they need to change.
The 2016 increases range from 3.8% for the Doctor’s Health Fund, to just under 9% for CUA health Fund.
The 5.6% increase amounts to the average family paying about $300 more a year for an average policy.
The scene for change has been set. But will the health minister act?
We start 2016 with big challenges for the health system and uncertainty as to how governments will meet them.
A significant proportion of the growth in Medicare costs has been driven by government policies such as items for new services and larger rebates.
The Coalition tried to justify its failed GP co-payment as an attempt to rein in consumers, who were driving the increase in Medicare costs. Turns out government policy was mostly to blame.
The government has acknowledged that just sending people off for a set number of psychology sessions is an inadequate response, particularly for people with more complex conditions.
The reforms announced today have the potential to change this appalling situation. But ultimately they should be judged on the outcomes they achieve for patients.
The scheme would be mandatory but consumers would be able to choose their preferred provider.
All insurers would have to provide a comprehensive set of health services to its customer, covering all aspects of their health care.
Consumers face significant out-of-pocket costs when using their insurance.
The private health insurance is complicated and difficult to navigate. Here's what we need to do to better protect consumers.
Ineffective care exposes patients to complications and side-effects and waste precious health care resources.
To avoid ineffective treatments, we need a new way to identify and reduce questionable care. A new Grattan Institute report shows how to do it.
The issue came to a head last year when the federal budget ripped billions of dollars of hospital funding from the states.
State and territory leaders will meet in Sydney today to nut out solutions to health and education funding gaps. But what exactly is the problem they're hoping to address?
The health system is at the heart of some of Australia’s strongest fiscal pressures.
AAP Image/Cleo Fraser
Following our series on Tony Abbott's five pillars of the economy, today we look at a sector overlooked by the prime minister.
GP attendances make up just one-third of Medicare expenditure.
Ezz Mika Elya/Shutterstock
Cutting Medicare rebates for GPs affects us all, whereas in-hospital private patient rebates, which only benefit the better-off, are ripe for the razor gang.
There’s elephant in the room that government-appointed reviewers need to notice if they’re going to overhaul the Medicare Benefits Schedule.
The review of Medicare recently announced by the health minister is not only a pachydermal task, it will also fail unless it acknowledges the elephant in the room – our fee-for service health system.
Health minister Sussan Ley announcing the government would maintain the Medicare rebate freeze but ditch the co-payment.
Doctors groups have warned the Coalition government's plan to maintain the Medicare rebate freeze will means patients will have to pay more for medical services.
We need more transparency around specialist charges so referring GPs and patients can make informed decisions.
The impact of specialist fees on government and patient budgets has received little reform attention. This is despite the government’s push for controls in health-care spending and growing evidence of…
The Coalition government is on the wrong track of reform for delivering better health.
The Coalition government has been claiming that Australia’s public health system is unsustainable since the 2014 budget. But its plans for the health system actually reflect the underlying belief that…
Australia’s health system is good, but it’s not perfect.
Health systems in all wealthier countries face similar problems, but their solutions are widely different. That should mean we can learn from other countries. To explore these differences, this week The…