Articles on Health economics

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The current rules seek to ensure most Australians have access to a pharmacy staffed by a highly skilled professional with a pharmacy degree. Shutterstock

Relaxing pharmacy ownership rules could result in more chemist chains and poorer care

Only pharmacists can own a pharmacy and you can't set one up within 1.5km of an existing one. But calls to loosen these rules could give health companies a green light to set up more chemist chains.
Desperate families are increasingly turning to crowdfunding campaigns to raise tens of thousands of dollars for surgery and other medical expenses. From shutterstock.com

It’s perfectly legal for doctors to charge huge amounts for surgery, but should it be allowed?

It is perfectly legal for a doctor working in private practice to charge what they believe is fair and reasonable. But that doesn't mean it's OK to charge tens of thousands of dollars for a procedure.
Labor has promised A$8 billion in new health expenditure, while the Coalition has focused on the difference new pharmaceuticals can make to individual Australians. Shutterstock

What are the major parties promising on health this election?

Labor and the Coalition's health policies and campaign strategy couldn't be more different this election.
Both sides of politics have gone hard on health in the first week of the campaign. Dave Hunt/AAP

Election campaign lesson #1: don’t mess with Medicare

Medicare is a vote-changer. The Coalition learnt this in the 2016 federal election campaign and has since guaranteed its commitment to the program. But that may not avert a Mediscare 2.0.
For some people, high out-of-pocket costs makes it difficult to see a doctor or fill a prescription. From shutterstock.com

We need more than a website to stop Australians paying exorbitant out-of-pocket health costs

Seeking and making sense of specialist fees is an unfair burden to place on vulnerable patients. A website might be helpful for some – but health professionals need to be held to higher account.

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