Australian Government, 2010‑11 Budget
Budget

Part 2: Expense Measures (Continued)

Health and Ageing

Addressing domestic violence — continuing training for health workers in regional and rural areas

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - - - - -
Medicare Australia - - - - -
Total - - - - -

The Government will provide $1.8 million in 2010‑11 to continue providing incentives and support payments for practice nurses and Aboriginal health workers in regional and rural areas to undertake training to help them recognise the signs of domestic violence, and to assist them to provide appropriate referrals to available resources in the community.

Provision of this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

Aged care — meeting demand for high‑level aged care

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 21.6 10.5 4.2 -1.6
Department of Veterans' Affairs - -7.9 -12.7 -12.1 -11.0
Total - 13.7 -2.2 -7.9 -12.6

The Government will redirect funding of $247.7 million over four years from high‑level residential aged care to high‑level community aged care to ensure new high‑level community aged care places are made available as quickly as possible. This will be achieved by temporarily adjusting the balance between high level community care and high level residential care within the target ratio for operational aged care places. The Government's overall target of 113 operational places per 1,000 people 70 years and over by 2011 will continue to be met.

This measure reflects the current preference of many older people to stay in their own home for as long as possible while accessing care services.

Future funding arrangements for the delivery of aged care will be reviewed in light of the findings of the Productivity Commission inquiry into aged care.

This measure will provide savings of $9.0 million over four years due to the lower costs associated with delivering care at home, while increasing the number of high‑level community aged care places.

Aged care assessment teams — continuation of funding

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of the Treasury - - - - -
Department of Health and Ageing - - - - -
Total - - - - -

The Government will provide $18.6 million over two years from 2010‑11 to continue payments to the States and Territories announced in the 2006‑07 Budget measure titled COAG Health Services — Improving arrangements for aged care assessments and access to Home and Community Care services and the 2004‑05 Budget measure titled Investing in Australia's Aged Care — improving assessment. This funding will ensure aged care assessment teams have the capability to undertake an adequate number of assessments in a timely manner to meet the demand for residential aged care.

As part of this measure, the Government will continue to provide incentives under the Aged Care Assessment Program to State and Territory governments that meet established benchmarks for timeliness, consistency and quality of aged care assessments.

Future funding arrangements for the delivery of aged care will be reviewed in light of the findings of the Productivity Commission inquiry into aged care.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

See also the related expense measure titled Aged care assessments — improving access and entry — continuation of funding in the Health and Ageing portfolio.

Aged care assessments — improving access and entry — continuation of funding

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - - - - -

The Government will provide $15.9 million over two years to continue Commonwealth own‑purpose elements of the 2006‑07 Budget measure titled COAG Health Services — improving arrangements for aged care assessments and access to Home and Community Care services and the 2004‑05 Budget measure titled Investing in Australia's Aged Care — improving assessment. This funding will help to improve access and entry to residential and community aged care.

This measure will continue the Aged Care Assessment Program which provides support to teams across Australia undertaking aged care assessments — a necessary first step for ageing Australians before taking up a Government‑supported residential aged care place. This funding will also help deliver national standards and coordination by providing training, learning and development tools and a range of development opportunities for State‑ and Territory‑employed assessment team staff.

The Government will also continue to work with the States and Territories to streamline access to Home and Community Care services for ageing Australians through the national network of Home and Community Care Access Point Demonstration Projects.

Future funding arrangements for the delivery of aged care will be reviewed in light of the findings of the Productivity Commission inquiry into aged care.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

See also the related expense measure titled Aged care assessment teams — continuation of funding in the Health and Ageing portfolio.

Australian Sports Commission — investing in Australia's sporting success

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Australian Sports Commission - 60.9 65.8 67.5 68.4

The Government will provide $324.8 million over four years to the Australian Sports Commission (ASC), including $62.1 million already provided for in the forward estimates, to support the long‑term sustainability of the Australian sport system, as part of its final response to the Independent Sport Panel's report The Future of Sport in Australia.

This measure will provide $195.2 million over four years for a range of sport initiatives at both the elite and community level, including:

  • providing talent identification and development opportunities for up to an additional 5,000 athletes;
  • increasing support for athletes to compete in international competitions;
  • increasing direct support for up to 665 of Australia's international and emerging athletes;
  • providing additional support for the development of up to 112 national coaches; and
  • education initiatives and coaching and officiating training for community sport.

This measure also includes $67.5 million over four years to continue support for the ASC's high performance programs ($51.6 million), the Australian Paralympic Committee's high performance programs ($14.9 million) and the broadcast of the 2012 London Paralympic Games ($1.0 million).

The Government will also continue to provide $62.1 million over four years to enable the Australian Institute of Sport to better support elite sport through coaching, talent identification and improved sports science and medicine.

Bernie Banton Foundation — donation

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - - - - -

The Government will provide $100,000 in 2009‑10 to the Bernie Banton Foundation as a contribution to the Foundation's fundraising campaign to assist asbestos disease sufferers and their families.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resourcing of the Department of Health and Ageing.

Better access to radiation oncology services — further efficiency

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - -21.8 -22.2 -22.6 -23.0

The Government will cease funding for the capital component of the Better Access to Radiation Oncology (BARO) measure announced in the 2006‑07 Budget.

The Government has provided $1.3 billion over six years from the Health and Hospitals Fund to support infrastructure to deliver a world‑class cancer care system in Australia, including funding for capital and infrastructure costs of regional cancer centres, in the 2009‑10 Budget measure titled Health and Hospitals Fund — national cancer statement.

This measure will provide savings of $89.4 million over four years.

Blood products — assessing new listings

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.2 0.9 0.5 0.5

The Government will provide $3.1 million over four years to assess proposals to list new blood products under the National Blood Agreement. This will ensure that timely advice is provided to the Government; that these proposals are dealt with consistently and efficiently; and that publicly funded products and services reflect best clinical practice. Expert advice will be provided to support a rigorous and transparent assessment process.

COAG Health Services — aligning services in rural and remote areas — more efficient arrangements

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - -2.1 -2.1 -2.1 -2.1

The Government will cease funding the 2006‑07 Budget measure titled COAG Health Services — aligning services in rural and remote areas, from 1 July 2010.

This measure has funded a strategy to consolidate and streamline health service delivery in communities with populations of less than 7,000 people. This strategy will now be delivered through the establishment of Local Hospital Networks and Medicare Locals under the National Health and Hospitals Network reforms.

This measure will provide savings of $8.4 million over four years.

Combating illicit drug use — continuation of media campaign funding

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - -1.1 -1.2 -0.8 -0.9

The Government will provide $21.2 million over four years to continue a national media campaign to promote the avoidance and cessation of illicit drug use.

This program is a component of the broader National Drugs Campaign that aims to reduce illicit drug use through social marketing campaigns and information distribution. This measure provides funding for campaigns aimed at reducing and reversing emerging trends in the use of illicit drugs. Current campaigns funded through this program focus on ecstasy, methamphetamine and cannabis use by young people.

Provision for funding this program has already been included in the forward estimates and this measure will provide savings of $4.0 million over four years through changing the focus of campaign activities.

Combating petrol sniffing — expanding the supply and uptake of Opal fuel

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 6.0 8.2 12.1 12.2

The Government will provide $38.5 million over four years to reduce the health and community impacts of petrol sniffing by expanding the voluntary roll‑out of Opal fuel. By 2012‑13, Opal fuel is expected to be available at an additional 39 petrol supply sites around 11 communities in the Northern Territory, Queensland and Western Australia.

Opal fuel contains lower levels of aromatic hydrocarbons, which eliminates the 'high' that can occur when petrol is sniffed. Its production, storage and distribution is subsidised by the Government to ensure it is competitive with regular unleaded petrol.

The funding will provide an additional subsidy per litre paid to the manufacturer of Opal fuel to cover the additional costs associated with the expanded distribution of Opal fuel, including the construction of additional storage facilities.

This measure also includes funding for a communications strategy to inform the community on the use of Opal fuel and a monitoring program to report on and evaluate the effectiveness of the initiative on the prevalence of petrol sniffing, including behavioural and community changes, and the incidence of people transferring to other substances.

Complementary programs to deliver diversionary activities in these communities, including youth services and sports and recreational facilities, will be provided from existing funding.

Community Care Grants and Flexible Care Grants — further efficiency

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing -0.5 -1.1 -1.2 -1.4 -0.8

The Government will decrease funding for the Community Care Grants program and the Flexible Care Grants program by reducing the number of establishment grants available to providers of Community Aged Care, Extended Aged Care at Home, and Extended Aged Care at Home Dementia packages.

The funding decrease aligns with the declining number of applications for grants and is not expected to impact on the level of services provided. This measure will provide savings of $5.1 million over five years.

The Government has committed to provide additional support for older Australians through the National Health and Hospitals Network package.

Department of Health and Ageing grant programs — reprioritisation

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - -13.3 -18.6 -25.4 -31.5

The Government will redirect unallocated funding from a number of grant programs. Savings will be redirected to support other Government priorities in the Health and Ageing portfolio. No existing commitments will be affected.

This measure will provide savings of $88.9 million over four years.

Drought assistance — Mental Health Support for Drought‑Affected Communities program — extension

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 5.5 - - -

The Government will provide $5.5 million in 2010‑11 to continue the mental health component of the Mental Health — increased mental health services for drought‑affected communities measure announced in the 2007‑08 Budget. This component supports mental health professionals and community leaders to respond to the psychological impact of drought.

Fifth Community Pharmacy Agreement

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Medicare Australia 0.4 10.7 9.4 4.9 4.6
Department of Veterans' Affairs - -7.3 -8.4 -7.7 -7.3
Department of Health and Ageing - -133.2 -113.7 -126.5 -117.5
Total 0.4 -129.8 -112.8 -129.2 -120.3
Medicare Australia - 4.6 3.4 - -

The Government and the Pharmacy Guild of Australia have signed a new five‑year Community Pharmacy Agreement to commence on 1 July 2010. The new arrangements will support the community pharmacy network and more patient‑centred approaches and services, while also providing value for money for the Government and taxpayers.

The agreement will see the Government provide an estimated $15.4 billion over five years from 2010‑11 for community pharmacies (including $3.3 billion in 2014‑15). This represents an increase of $3.8 billion over the previous agreement, which ends on 30 June 2010.

The new agreement will deliver gross savings of around $1.0 billion compared to the forward estimates, less $0.4 billion in additional funding, over five years from 2010‑11. This will result in a net saving of $0.6 billion over the life of the agreement (including $112.7 million in 2014‑15). The Government will provide $0.4 million in 2009‑10 to Medicare Australia to implement necessary system changes.

Taking into account the funding to Medicare Australia, this measure will provide savings of $985.4 million over six years (including $207.7 million in 2014‑15). Under the measure:

  • the 40 cent payment for prescriptions processed using PBS Online by community and private hospital pharmacists will cease (saving $417.7 million);
  • in 2010‑11 and 2011‑12, indexation applied to the dispensing fee, currently $6.42, will be frozen (saving $281.5 million);
  • a number of underperforming professional pharmacy programs will cease (saving $226.4 million);
  • private hospital pharmacy remuneration will be reduced in line with public hospital pharmacy counterparts (saving $35.3 million);
  • in 2010‑11, the indexation applied to the Community Service Obligation funding pool used to ensure timely delivery of medicines by wholesalers to pharmacies, will be frozen (saving $19.2 million); and
  • the freight allowance paid to non‑metropolitan pharmacists in Western Australia will cease (saving $5.3 million).

The measure will also provide funding of $375.3 million over six years (including $91.8 million in 2014‑15) to implement new initiatives under the agreement. These include:

  • a range of new patient‑focused pharmacy programs including patient medication monitoring (at a cost of $285.5 million);
  • a 15 cent payment to pharmacists for every prescription processed electronically with a National E‑Health Transition Authority specifications (at a cost of $82.6 million); and
  • collection of data on pharmaceuticals that are priced below the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme general co‑payment (currently $33.30) including patient, prescriber and dispenser demographic data (at a cost of $7.2 million).

In addition, the increase to the special handling fee announced in the 2009‑10 Budget measure titled Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — Interim increase in the handling fee under the section 100 Remote Aboriginal Health Service Program, will be maintained at $2.69 (previously increased from $1.14) and indexed annually from 1 July 2010, at a cost of $13.9 million over six years (including $3.2 million in 2014‑15).

Capital funding of $8.1 million will be provided to Medicare Australia over 2010‑11 to 2011‑12 to implement changes to payment systems.

Further information can be found in the press release of 3 May 2010 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

Health Workforce — supporting nurses back into the workforce — redirection of funding

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - -1.3 -2.2 -2.5 -1.6
Department of the Treasury - -6.6 -8.8 -9.8 -6.3
Total - -8.0 -11.0 -12.3 -7.9

The Government will redirect funding for the 2008‑09 Budget measure titled Health and Hospitals ReformHealth Workforce — supporting nurses back into the workforce. Existing participants will continue to be eligible for payments.

The Government will continue to ensure the health workforce will be able to meet Australia's needs. The Government will spend a total of $1.2 billion as part of the National Health and Hospitals Network (NHHN) reforms to address current workforce constraints faced by general practitioners, nurses and allied health professionals — see the new health workforce expense measures in the NHHN package.

As a part of the NHHN health workforce package, $531.6 million will be targeted at retaining and upskilling the nursing workforce.

This measure will provide savings of $39.1 million over four years, which will be redirected towards other priorities.

Jigsaw Foundation — support for craniofacial surgery

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.3 1.3 1.3 1.3

The Government will provide $5.0 million over four years to the Jigsaw Foundation to establish a Chair in Plastic/Craniofacial Surgery and fund several PhD research positions in the Department of Plastic and Maxillofacial Surgery at the Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne. This funding is conditional on the Jigsaw Foundation obtaining matched funding from the Victorian Government and other donors.

This funding will strengthen leadership in the Department of Plastic and Maxillofacial Surgery and enhance collaboration between clinical practice, education and research in craniofacial surgery.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — restructure of items to provide better primary care services

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing 1.5 -0.5 -0.3 -0.3 -0.4
Department of Veterans' Affairs -0.1 -1.7 -1.7 -1.7 -1.6
Medicare Australia -0.1 -2.0 -2.1 -2.2 -2.3
Total 1.2 -4.3 -4.0 -4.2 -4.3

The Government will encourage the provision of better primary healthcare services by increasing rebates for long and complex consultations with general practitioners (GPs). The rules governing eligibility to claim these items will also be clarified.

From 1 May 2010 the Government has also streamlined the Medicare Benefits Schedule by merging items providing similar services, and simplifying the structure of other items, such as those for after‑hours attendances and case‑conferencing services.

This measure will provide savings of $15.5 million over five years.

Further information can be found in the press release of 14 December 2009 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — new and revised listings

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Medicare Australia .. .. .. .. ..
Department of Veterans' Affairs .. -0.1 -0.1 -0.1 -0.1
Department of Health and Ageing -0.2 -1.3 -1.4 -1.6 -1.8
Total -0.2 -1.4 -1.5 -1.7 -1.9

The Government will amend the Medicare Benefits Schedule and Veterans' Benefits for new and revised listings since the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2009‑10.

The amendments to the Medicare Benefits Schedule include:

  • revision of two items and addition of five new items for cytogenetic studies, a branch of genetics that studies the structure and function of chromosomes using techniques such as banding and fluorescently labelled probes;
  • revision of three items for the use of argon plasma coagulation in the treatment of intestinal bleeding;
  • revision of three items to provide for Botulinum Toxin (Botox) injections for the treatment of dynamic foot deformity for patients of 18 years of age and older who have responded to this treatment as an adolescent; and
  • the addition of six new items for the use of sacral nerve stimulation therapy for the treatment of certain urinary conditions.

Further information is available in the summary of changes included in the Medicare Benefits Schedule issued by the Department of Health and Ageing.

This measure will provide savings of $6.8 million over five years.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — rebates for cataract‑related items — revision

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing 10.9 12.4 13.0 14.1 15.3
Department of Veterans' Affairs 0.8 1.1 1.0 0.9 0.9
Total 11.6 13.5 14.0 15.1 16.2

The Government will modify elements of the 2009‑10 Budget measure titled Medicare Benefits Schedule — ensuring the appropriate use of clinical procedures and adjusting to modern technologies that relate to the reduction in rebates for cataract operations. The schedule fee for these items will be reduced by 12 per cent, instead of 50 per cent.

The revision to this measure will result in reduced savings of $70.4 million over five years.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — removal of practice accreditation requirements for General Practice Focussed Psychological Strategies services

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - -0.3 -0.5 -0.5 -0.6

The Government will change the rules governing eligibility to provide Medicare‑subsidised Focussed Psychological Strategies (FPS) services. FPS services include cognitive therapy, workshops to improve patients' communication skills and stress management techniques.

Currently, only doctors who work in practices that are accredited by the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) can provide these services. From 1 July 2010, doctors will be able to provide Medicare‑subsidised FPS services even if they do not work in practices accredited by the RACGP. This is expected to increase the total number of FPS services being provided to Australians with a mental illness.

This measure will provide savings of $1.9 million over four years, as FPS services are less likely to result in the prescribing of pharmaceuticals to the patient. FPS services also have lower Medicare safety net flow‑on costs as they have higher levels of bulk billing which results in no out‑of‑pocket expenses for patients.

Medicare Benefits Schedule — revision of access for specialist consultation items

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 2.1 3.7 4.4 5.2
Medicare Australia - 0.3 0.2 0.2 0.3
Department of Veterans' Affairs - 0.1 0.2 0.2 0.2
Total - 2.5 4.0 4.8 5.6

The Government will provide $16.9 million over four years to extend access to the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) for three newly recognised medical specialties. From 1 November 2010, specialists in the fields of Sexual Health Medicine, Addiction Medicine and Sports and Exercise Medicine will be able to provide Medicare‑subsidised specialist attendance services.

National Binge Drinking Strategy — expansion

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 9.5 11.8 14.3 14.3

The Government will provide $50.0 million over four years to build upon existing initiatives designed to address binge drinking in the community. The measure will reduce visible alcohol promotion at public events, expand community‑level programs to combat binge drinking culture and support people with alcohol misuse problems.

Funding of $25.0 million will be used to provide grants to local sporting and other organisations as an alternative source of sponsorship to fund their activities, replacing funding that may have been supplied by the alcohol industry. Further funding of $20.0 million will be spent on expanding community‑level initiatives. In addition, $5.0 million will be spent on expanding existing telephone counselling services for people addressing alcohol problems, and possible expansion of existing social marketing campaigns.

This takes the Government's commitment to the National Binge Drinking Strategy to a total of $103.5 million since the 2008‑09 Budget.

National Cord Blood Collection Network — continuation and increased funding

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 5.7 4.0 4.1 4.2

The Government will provide $18.1 million over four years to continue and increase the level of funding for the National Cord Blood Collection Network (also known as AusCord). The National Cord Blood Collection Network, which is jointly funded with the States and Territories, collects, processes and stores stem cells ready for transplantation to individuals with leukaemia, lymphoma and other similar life threatening diseases.

This increase in funding will improve the sustainability of the National Cord Blood Collection Network and bring funding in line with support for other blood products. The Government will continue to work with the States and Territories and the National Cord Blood Collection Network to ensure the supply of cord blood units is adequate to meet the needs of the Australian population.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Aged care — expand access to multi‑purpose services

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 50.7 35.5 35.5 0.3

The Government will provide $122.0 million over four years to establish new, and increase the capacity of existing, multi‑purpose services facilities. Up to 286 additional beds are expected to be available by 2012‑13. Multi‑purpose services provide a combination of services including acute care, residential aged care, community health, home and community care and other health‑related services. These services ensure small communities who have difficulty supporting a range of independently run services have access to more coordinated and cost‑effective services.

This measure will provide more flexible places in rural and regional areas to patients who require either sub‑acute (geriatric, rehabilitation and interim care) or aged care services.

As a result, it is expected that this measure will free existing bed capacity in hospitals, providing around 33,000 more acute services each year when fully implemented.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health and the joint press release issued by the Prime Minister, the Minister for Health and the Minister for Ageing of 12 April 2010.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Aged care — expansion of zero real interest loans

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 72.1 72.1 0.4 0.4

The Government will provide an additional $300.0 million in zero real interest loans to assist in expanding the availability of residential aged care beds. These loans will be available to aged care providers to build or expand aged care homes in areas of high need, in particular those areas with higher numbers of long stay older patients. The additional funding will provide loans up to $120,000 per aged care place which will allow for an additional 2,500 places nationally. Loan recipients will pay interest at a rate equal to the Consumer Price Index.

The loans will be administered through two rounds, totalling $150.0 million in 2010‑11 and $150.0 million in 2011‑12.

In addition, the guidelines governing the Zero Real Interest Loan program will be modified by:

  • expanding the definition of 'high need area', to include areas with higher numbers of Long Stay Older Patients in public hospitals;
  • extending eligibility criteria to allow aged care providers to seek loans in respect of allocations of places that they already hold but have not yet succeeded in bringing those places into operation; and
  • extending the repayment period for new zero interest loans from the current 12 years to 22 years.

The net impact of this measure will be $145 million over four years. Loans are treated as financial assets and therefore only the concessional interest cost of offering the loan impacts on the fiscal balance. The interest revenue foregone is an upfront cost to the Budget in the years that the funds are lent out, amortised over the life of the loan.

This measure builds on the 2008‑09 Budget measure titled Health and Hospitals Reform — Aged Care — Residential aged care — zero real interest loans.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health and the joint press release issued by the Prime Minister, the Minister for Health and the Minister for Ageing of 12 April 2010.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Aged care — improving access to General Practice and primary health care

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 13.4 14.1 35.2 34.5
Medicare Australia 0.2 0.5 0.2 0.1 0.1
Total 0.2 13.9 14.2 35.3 34.6
Medicare Australia - 0.3 0.1 - -

The Government will provide $98.6 million over five years to support additional primary care services for older Australians in aged care.

Funding will be used to target gaps in primary health care services by offering financial incentives to general practitioners, nurses, geriatricians and allied health professionals to provide bulk‑billed health services, including call out and regular check up visits, to residents of aged care facilities.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health and the joint press release issued by the Prime Minister, the Minister for Health and the Minister for Ageing of 12 April 2010.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Aged care — improving the viability of community care providers

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 2.3 2.5 2.6 2.7

The Government will provide $10.1 million over four years to increase the viability supplement paid to eligible community care providers from 1 July 2010.

This funding will be used to pay community care providers in regional, rural and remote Australia the same incentives that are paid to residential care providers. These incentives recognise the additional cost for providers of services in these regions compared with metropolitan areas. The increased payment will be paid to eligible community care providers, multi‑purpose services and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flexible services.

This funding will further assist older Australians living in regional, rural and remote areas to continue to access high‑quality community aged care close to where they live.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health and the joint press release issued by the Prime Minister, the Minister for Health and the Minister for Ageing of 12 April 2010.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Aged care — increasing business efficiency

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.3 2.1 2.2 2.2
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.3 - - -

The Government will provide $7.0 million over four years only (including $0.3 million in capital) to improve the business efficiency of aged care providers by establishing a new provider benchmarking system. The new benchmarking system will allow aged care providers to compare their operational and service performance with other providers, and identify areas where they can improve their performance. This information will also be available to consumers to inform their choice of an aged care service provider.

Eligible aged care providers will also have access to financial advisory services to improve their operational efficiency. This will include financial advice on strategic planning, business analysis, operational reviews and human resources management.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Aged care — protecting savings

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 5.3 5.1 5.2 5.3
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.0 - - -

The Government will provide $21.8 million over four years (including $1.0 million in capital funding) to enhance the protection of accommodation bonds held by aged care providers by applying more stringent requirements on how accommodation bonds can be invested. In addition, criminal penalties for the misuse of accommodation bonds will be introduced.

Reporting requirements in relation to how bonds are used will also be strengthened. The Government will consult with consumers and industry with a view to putting the new arrangements in place by 1 July 2011.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health and the joint press release issued by the Prime Minister, the Minister for Health and the Minister for Ageing of 12 April 2010.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Aged care — strengthening arrangements for complaints

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 9.6 11.9 12.7 13.7
Aged Care Standards and Accreditation Agency - 0.5 0.7 0.7 0.8
Total - 10.1 12.6 13.4 14.5

The Government will provide $50.6 million over four years to improve complaints handling processes for consumers of aged care services.

This measure increases funding for the Aged Care Complaints Investigation Scheme to improve its ability to respond to users of aged care services, or their relatives or advocates, who raise concerns or queries about the care they receive. Better access to mediation and conciliation services will also be provided through this measure.

Additional funding will also be provided for the Aged Care Standards and Accreditation Agency to meet the likely rise in referrals from the expanded Aged Care Complaints Investigation Scheme.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health and the joint press release issued by the Prime Minister, the Minister for Health and the Minister for Ageing of 12 April 2010.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Aged care — supporting long stay older patients

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.0 1.0 0.4 0.4
Department of the Treasury - - - - -
Total - 1.0 1.0 0.4 0.4

The Government will redirect funding of $276.4 million over three years from 2011‑12 from high care residential aged care places to the State and Territory governments to provide similar levels of care for Long Stay Older Patients (LSOP) in public hospitals.

This will cover patients who, after receiving acute medical attention and having been assessed as needing aged care, cannot be discharged until their care arrangements have been finalised.

As the numbers of LSOP are expected to decline over time as a result of other reforms announced as part of the National Health and Hospitals Network package, this measure funds up to 2,000 places in 2011‑12, up to 1,700 places in 2012‑13 and up to 1,400 places in 2013‑14. The cost of these places will be met from within existing funding in the forward estimates for aged care places.

This measure also provides for the continuation of the existing LSOP initiative for a further two years to 2011‑12. This initiative supports hospitals and multi‑purpose services to deliver more flexible care to older people. Through this initiative the Commonwealth is providing $37.5 million per year to States and Territories, allocated on the basis of the population of aged persons in each State and Territory. The LSOP initiative was agreed by COAG in 2006 and was a 2006‑07 Budget measure titled COAG Health Services — improving care for older patients in public hospitals.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network : Further Investments in Australia's Health and the joint press release issued by the Prime Minister, the Minister for Health and the Minister for Ageing of 12 April 2010.

Provision for this funding, except for the implementation costs, has already been included in the forward estimates.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Building the foundations for reform — information and awareness

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing 9.9 18.3 1.1 0.2 -

The Government will provide $29.5 million to deliver a national communications campaign to inform Australians about the changes and improvements to health services to be implemented under the National Health and Hospitals Network.

The campaign will fund national advertising, information products and a website to provide detailed information to consumers and health professionals about the individual initiatives and reforms.

National Health and Hospitals Network — eHealth — personally controlled electronic health records

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 185.6 281.2 - -

The Government will provide $466.7 million over two years to establish the key components of the personally controlled electronic health record system for Australia. This secure online system will enable improved access to health care information, commencing in 2012‑13.

This funding will provide the capability to produce nationally consistent patient health summaries from existing and compliant information sources. Patients who choose to participate will be able to securely access, and permit their healthcare providers to access, their health information. Personally controlled health records will over time be capable of incorporating a range of health information, such as a patient's general health history, pathology and radiology summaries and prescription information. This will support more informed clinical assessments and decision making, improve continuity of care for patients and introduce efficiencies in health care service delivery.

The measure builds on the Healthcare Identifiers Service, which is being developed as a foundation service for eHealth initiatives in Australia. Healthcare identifiers will allow for accurate identification of patients and health care providers and provider organisations. Subject to the passage of legislation, $0.5 million per annum in existing funding will be provided to the Office of the Privacy Commissioner for regulatory support in relation to health care identifiers in 2010‑11 and 2011‑12.

In order to fully realise the significant benefits of this Commonwealth investment, State and Territory governments will also need to continue their planned or expected investments in core health information systems. The States and Territories will also need to provide the complementary investments to build their capacity in readiness for connection to this national system.

National Health and Hospitals Network — expansion of the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.7 7.2 11.6 12.7
National Health and Medical Research Council - - 1.0 1.0 1.0
Total - 0.7 8.2 12.6 13.7

The Commonwealth Government will provide $35.2 million over four years to jointly fund, with the States and Territories, the continuation and expansion of the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (the Commission) to support improvements in safety and quality in health care. The Commission, which has been operating within the Department of Health and Ageing, will be established as a permanent and independent agency.

The Commission will help develop national clinical safety and quality guidelines and standards, and a national system of accreditation for care in hospitals, primary health care and mental health. The Commission will also undertake data analysis and more frequent reporting on clinical practice to support improved performance and to meet national reporting requirements.

National Health and Hospitals Network — General practice and primary care — coordinated diabetes care

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 4.3 9.8 179.2 242.7
Medicare Australia - 1.3 2.1 3.3 3.6
Department of Veterans' Affairs - 0.1 0.1 0.7 0.8
Total - 5.7 12.0 183.2 247.0
Medicare Australia - - 1.3 - -

The Government will provide $449.2 million over four years (including capital of $1.3 million) to improve the quality and coordination of primary health care services provided to people with diabetes from 1 July 2012.

Patients will have the choice to enrol with a general practice that will:

  • receive pooled payments to be used for managing their care, including the development of a personalised care plan;
  • help organise access to additional specialist services they may need, such as care from a dietician, as set out in the personalised care plan; and
  • be paid, in part, on the basis of their performance in keeping their patients healthy and out of hospital.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health of 12 April 2010 and the joint press release of 31 March 2010 issued by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Health and Hospitals Network — General practice and primary care — establishing Medicare Locals and improving access to after hours primary care

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 13.4 66.6 156.1 179.7
Medicare Australia - 0.6 .. 0.4 -
Total - 14.0 66.6 156.5 179.7

The Government will provide $416.8 million to establish a nation‑wide network of Primary Health Care Organisations to be known as Medicare Locals, and improve access to after hours primary care.

Medicare Locals will be responsible for improving the delivery of primary care in local communities by better connecting hospital, general practices, allied health, aged care and Indigenous health services, making it easier for patients to get the care they need, after hours.

To ensure that all communities have access to general practice services after hours, $126.3 million over four years will be provided to establish high quality, integrated after‑hours care services, coordinated by Medicare Locals.

After hours services will be accessible through a telephone‑based advice and diagnostic service, staffed by nurses and general practitioners. Where necessary, the call centre will arrange for them to be seen by a general practitioner in their local community. The availability of general practitioner services, after hours, in local communities will be coordinated by Medicare Locals.

Medicare Locals will be responsible for a range of functions aimed at making it easier for patients to access more integrated care. For example, they will;

  • facilitate allied health care services and support for people with chronic diseases, as identified in general practitioner care plans;
  • support collaboration between service providers; and
  • identify groups of people missing out on general practitioner and primary care services, and better target services which respond to these gaps.

Where possible, Medicare Locals will be developed from existing Divisions of General Practice with approximately $180.0 million in contractual funding for Divisions being redirected to Medicare Locals following the completion of existing contracts. This is in addition to the $290.5 million in new funding for Medicare Locals announced in this measure. Medicare Locals will facilitate strong links to local communities, health professionals, and service providers.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health of 12 April 2010 and the press release of 12 April 2010 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Health and Hospitals Network — General practice and primary care — improved primary care infrastructure

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 56.7 179.4 119.1 -

The Government will provide $355.2 million over three years to improve access to primary health care by establishing an additional 23 GP Super Clinics and providing approximately 425 grants to expand existing general practices and primary care, community health and Indigenous medical services, to deliver GP Super Clinic style services.

GP Super Clinics will assist the delivery of multidisciplinary care services by co‑locating general practitioners with nurses, allied health professionals and other health care providers in community settings. This will promote more coordinated and integrated care for patients, in particular for those with chronic and complex conditions.

The capacity building grants will be provided to existing facilities to assist the delivery of team‑based care and provide GP Super Clinic‑style services, including providing expanded accommodation for general practitioners and other health professionals, extended opening hours and clinical training facilities.

National Health and Hospitals Network — General practice and primary care — improving access to primary care

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - - - - -

The Government will continue the 2006‑07 Budget measure COAG Health Services — improving access to primary care in rural and remote areas. This measure provides emergency departments and outpatient clinics in state government hospitals with the ability to provide Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) eligible services. These arrangements apply to eligible emergency departments and outpatient clinics located in an area of workforce shortage, with a population of less than 7,000. State government hospitals are generally not permitted to provide MBS‑eligible services as state hospital services are funded through the National Healthcare Specific Purpose Payment (between the Commonwealth and State and Territory governments) and are provided free of charge to patients.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates, including $2.0 million over four years to administer this program.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Hospitals — activity based funding

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.6 2.2 19.1 17.4
Department of Finance and Deregulation 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Total 0.1 1.7 2.3 19.2 17.5
Department of Health and Ageing - 66.0 35.8 4.5 16.3

The Government will provide $163.4 million over five years to develop the infrastructure and applications framework needed to accelerate of the implementation of the activity based funding ahead of what was previously agreed to be implemented at COAG November 2008.

It will also enable the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority and National Performance Authority to analyse and report on relevant activity based funding data.

See also the related expense measures titled National Health and Hospitals Network — Governance — National Performance Authority and National Health and Hospitals Network — Governance — Independent Hospital Pricing Authority.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Hospitals — flexible funding for emergency departments, elective surgery and sub‑acute care

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of the Treasury 125.0 25.0 25.0 25.0 -
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.2 0.2 0.1 -
Total 125.0 25.2 25.2 25.1 -

The Government will provide $200.4 million over four years from 2009‑10 to increase hospital capacity and improve services to patients through a flexible funding pool for States and Territories to drive improvements to emergency departments, elective surgery and sub‑acute care.

Further information can be found in the COAG communiqu� of 20 April 2010.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Hospitals — four hour national access target for emergency departments — facilitation and reward funding

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of the Treasury - 150.0 100.0 100.0 150.0
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.5 0.5 0.4 0.4
Total - 150.5 100.5 100.4 150.4

The Government will provide $501.9 million over four years to introduce a four‑hour national access target to reduce the time taken to treat patients in public hospital emergency departments. Of this, $250 million will be provided from 2010‑11 to help States and Territories move towards the new national four‑hour target for emergency departments, with a further $250 million available in reward payments for those States and Territories that meet this target. The facilitation and reward payments will be made available to the States and Territories under a National Partnership Agreement.

The four‑hour national access target for emergency departments will require hospitals to admit, refer or discharge patients within four hours of presenting at a hospital emergency department where it is clinically appropriate to do so. The implementation of the four‑hour target will be staggered over time, so that it will first apply, in 2011, to those cases in the most urgent category of clinical need and will be progressively applied to the less urgent clinical triage categories so that by 1 January 2015, all triage category patients will be subject to the access target.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health of 12 April 2010 and the press release of 11 April 2010 issued by the Prime Minister.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Hospitals — four hour national access targets for emergency departments — capital funding

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of the Treasury 100.0 50.0 50.0 50.0 -
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.4 0.4 0.3 0.2
Total 100.0 50.4 50.4 50.3 0.2

The Government will provide $251.4 million over five years to expand capacity within the hospital system for emergency department treatment.

The expansion of emergency departments and associated facilities will help achieve the Government's new four‑hour national access target. This target will require emergency departments to admit, refer or discharge patients within four hours of presenting at a hospital emergency department where clinically appropriate. This funding will allow for the upgrade of public hospital emergency departments in order to meet these new targets and will be distributed on a needs basis.

See also the related expense measure titled National Health and Hospitals Network — Hospitals — four hour national access target for emergency departments — facilitation and reward funding in the Health and Ageing portfolio.

Further information can be found in the COAG communiqu� of 20 April 2010 and the press releases of 11 April 2010 issued by the Prime Minister.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Hospitals — improving access to elective surgery — capital funding

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of the Treasury 75.0 50.0 25.0 - -
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.4 0.4 - -
Total 75.0 50.4 25.4 - -

The Government will provide $150.7 million over three years to boost elective surgery capacity in public hospitals.

Expanding the capacity to perform elective surgery will help to achieve the Government's new national target for elective surgery and the National Access Guarantee for Elective Surgery. This target seeks to ensure that 95 per cent of elective surgery patients are seen within clinically recommended times by 2015. The guarantee seeks to ensure that elective surgery will be provided rapidly and free of charge to patients in either the public or private sector if the clinically recommended time for the operation has elapsed.

See also the related expense measure titled National Health and Hospitals Network — Hospitals — improving access to elective surgery — facilitation and reward funding in the Health and Ageing portfolio.

Further information can be found in the COAG Communiqu� of 20 April 2010 and the joint press releases of 12 April 2010 issued by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Hospitals — improving access to elective surgery — facilitation and reward funding

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of the Treasury - 300.0 118.0 116.0 116.0
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.6 0.6 0.5 0.5
Total - 300.6 118.6 116.5 116.5

The Government will provide $652.3 million over four years to reduce the waiting times for elective surgery in public hospitals. Of this, $300 million will be provided to the States and Territories in 2010‑11 to help reduce elective surgery backlogs, with a further $350 million available in reward payments for those States and Territories that meet the announced targets. These funds will be made available to the States and Territories under a National Partnership Agreement.

The introduction of a National Access Guarantee for elective surgery from 1 July 2012 will mean that free treatment in public or private hospitals will be rapidly provided if patients wait longer than the clinically recommended time for elective surgery. The elective surgery target will specify that by the end of 2015, 95 per cent of all public elective surgery patients will be seen within the clinically recommended time.

Further information can be found in the joint press release of 12 April 2010 issued by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Hospitals — new sub‑acute hospital beds

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of the Treasury - 233.6 317.6 446.6 625.5
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.7 0.6 0.5 0.4
Total - 234.3 318.2 447.1 625.9

The Government will provide $1.6 billion over four years to provide funding for at least 1,300 addition beds for sub‑acute services.

Under the measure States and Territories will need to commit to and establish an agreed number of new sub‑acute beds each year to receive a payment from the Commonwealth. These beds could be provided in public hospitals, as well as in private hospitals or in community settings. This funding will provide beds for palliative, rehabilitative and geriatric care, as well as sub‑acute mental health treatment.

Further information can be found in the COAG Communiqu� and the joint press release of 20 April 2010 issued by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Independent Hospital Pricing Authority

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 3.8 31.8 28.5 27.7

The Government will provide $91.8 million over four years to establish an Independent Hospital Pricing Authority to manage the development of national activity based funding arrangements and set the efficient price for public hospital services. In setting the efficient price of public hospital services, the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority will take into account the need to ensure reasonable and equitable access and clinical safety. Price determinations will recognise key factors such as remoteness and hospital size.

The Authority will also provide independent arbitration on cost allocation issues between the Commonwealth and States and Territories, and on cross‑border charging between States and Territories.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Mental health — additional mental health nurses

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 5.3 7.7 - -

The Government will provide $13.0 million over two years to increase funding for the Mental Health Nurse Incentive program. The program funds community‑based general practices, private psychiatric practices and other similar organisations to engage mental health nurses to assist in providing coordinated clinical care for people with severe mental health disorders.

Mental health nurses work in collaboration with psychiatrists and general practitioners to provide services such as monitoring a patient's mental state, medication management and improving links to other health professionals and clinical service providers.

Further information can be found in the COAG communiqu� and the joint press release of 20 April 2010 issued by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Mental health — expanding the Early Psychosis Prevention and Intervention Centre model

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of the Treasury - 5.9 5.9 5.9 5.9
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.6 0.5 0.5 0.5
Total - 6.5 6.3 6.4 6.4

The Government will provide $25.5 million over four years to establish new Early Psychosis Prevention and Intervention Centres (EPPIC) in partnership with states and territories. This measure will build on the EPPIC model currently operating in Victoria. EPPIC provides an integrated and comprehensive psychiatric service to help address the needs of people aged 15‑24 with emerging psychotic disorders. Services provided include early intervention and clinical treatment.

Further information can be found in the Council of Australian Governments' communiqu� of 20 April 2010 and the joint press releases of 12 April 2010.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Mental health — flexible care packages for patients with severe mental illnesses

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Medicare Australia 0.1 0.1 .. -0.1 -0.1
Department of Health and Ageing - -3.0 5.2 2.5 1.4
Total 0.1 -3.0 5.1 2.4 1.3

The Government will provide $58.5 million over five years to establish personal multidisciplinary care packages for patients with severe mental illness.

The existing Access to Allied Psychological Services program will be expanded and enhanced to allow approximately 6,000 patients per year to receive a package of customised treatment. Customised treatment packages will cover a range of services, including those provided by allied health professionals such as mental health nurses, psychologists, occupational therapists, social workers and social support services.

These packages will be coordinated through organisations such as Medicare Locals to be established under the National Health and Hospitals Network package.

This measure provides $5.9 million over five years, with the remaining costs to be met through the rationalisation of the Better Access to Mental Health Care program.

Further information can be found in the COAG communiqu� of 20 April and the press release of 20 April 2010 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Mental health — more youth friendly services

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 10.8 19.9 23.8 24.3

The Government will provide $78.8 million over four years to establish up to 30 new Headspace sites, to provide additional funding to existing sites and expand telephone and web‑based mental health services for young people. This investment will support an additional 20,000 young people a year once the new sites are established.

This measure builds on the existing headspace program which provides community‑based support and assistance to Australians aged 12‑25 with, or at risk of, mental illness.

Further information can be found in the COAG communiqu� and the joint press release of 20 April 2010 issued by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Health and Hospitals Network — National Performance Authority

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 22.3 23.6 29.4 34.2

The Government will provide $118.6 million over four years to establish a National Performance Authority to monitor and report on the performance of Local Hospital Networks, Medicare Locals and public and private hospitals. The National Performance Authority will provide transparent public reporting against new national standards. It will report on hospitals through Hospital Performance Reports, and on primary care through Healthy Community Reports. These reports will help Australians make more informed choices about their health services.

This measure also includes funding for the Department of Health and Ageing to ensure the Commonwealth can establish they key design principles for Local Hospital Networks and provide leadership to support their development.

The Government will partially offset the cost of the new governance arrangements by adjusting funding for the existing Hospital Accountability and Performance Program to ensure there is no duplication. This offset will provide a saving of $9.1 million ($5.1 million in 2011‑12 and $3.9 million in 2012‑13), resulting in an estimated net cost of this measure of $109.5 million.

In light of the significant National Health and Hospital Network reforms, the Government during 2010‑11 will undertake a strategic review of the ongoing administrative arrangements within the Health and Ageing portfolio.

This measure forms part of the Government's National Health and Hospitals Network package.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Prevention — national tobacco campaign — more targeted approach

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - - - - -

The Government will provide $27.8 million over four years to fund anti‑tobacco social marketing campaigns to groups within the community that have been harder to reach by traditional methods.

New campaigns will be developed and delivered to highlight the danger of tobacco use to people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, people with mental illness, prisoners and Indigenous Australians. These groups within the community have a higher rate of tobacco use and have shown a smaller decrease in tobacco use in response to previous Government anti‑smoking messages.

Funding for this measure has already been included in the forward estimates.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Prevention — plain packaging of tobacco products

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.3 1.0 0.2 0.1

The Government will provide $2.6 million over four years to implement plain packaging for tobacco products. This measure will prohibit the use of tobacco industry logos, colours, brand imagery and promotional text on tobacco products to continue efforts to reduce the level of smoking in the community.

Legislation regulating tobacco products will be changed so that, from 1 January 2012, tobacco packaging will contain only the brand name and product name in a standard font style, colour and position. These changes are designed to reduce the attractiveness and appeal of tobacco products to consumers and increase the prominence of health warnings.

Further information can be found in the press release of 29 April 2010 issued by the Prime Minister.

National Health and Hospitals Network — rebalancing financial responsibility in the federation

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - - 321.1 356.7 384.0
Department of the Treasury - - -38.1 -61.7 -77.0
Total - - 283.0 295.0 307.0
Department of Health and Ageing - - 283.0 295.0 307.0

On 20 April 2010, the Council of Australian Governments, with the exception of Western Australia, agreed to establish a National Health and Hospitals Network. In establishing the National Health and Hospitals Network, the Government will become the majority funder of public hospital services, and take full funding and policy responsibility for GP, primary health care, and aged care.

This measure will be implemented from 2011‑12. The Commonwealth will fund its increased responsibilities through a combination of:

  • the current National Healthcare Specific Purpose Payment (SPP);
  • an agreed amount of GST retained and dedicated to health and hospital services, estimated to be around one‑third of total GST; and
  • from 2014‑15, additional top‑up funding paid by the Commonwealth, reflecting its greater responsibility for financing growth in health costs.

Through the years 2011‑12 to 2013‑14, the amount of dedicated GST will be determined annually based on actual health expenditure of the States and Territories for agreed responsibilities. This approach ensures that the rebalancing of financial responsibility is budget‑neutral over the forward estimates period.

Current estimates of retained and dedicated GST are $13.7 billion in 2011‑12, $14.9 billion in 2012‑13 and $16.3 billion in 2013‑14. These estimates are based on projections using data from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Further details of the allocation of responsibilities under the NHHN, and data and payment methods are to be agreed with the states and territories. These estimates exclude Western Australia.

The amount of dedicated GST will be fixed from 2014‑15, based on 2013‑14 health care costs and indexed annually at the rate of overall GST growth.

From 2014‑15, the Commonwealth will provide additional funding, over and above the existing National Healthcare Specific Purpose Payments and the fixed dedicated share of GST, in order to meet its new health care funding responsibilities. Under the National Health and Hospitals Network Agreement, the Commonwealth has guaranteed to pay no less than $15.6 billion in such top‑up payments to the States and Territories between 2014‑15 and 2019‑20.

The changes to roles and responsibilities for Home and Community Care and related programs required the transfer of funding shown in the table above between the Commonwealth and State and Territory Governments. The reduced expense for Treasury reflect the changes to roles and responsibilities are budget neutral over the forward estimates, funded through a reduction in the National Healthcare Specific Purpose Payment. The increased expense for the Department of Health and Ageing is to pay for people aged 65 and over (50 and over for Indigenous people) accessing services through the Home and Community Care program and specialist disability services under the National Disability Agreement. The related revenue is funding from State and Territory Governments to pay for people aged under 65 (under 50 for Indigenous people) in residential aged care or using packaged aged care programs.

Further information can be found in the Council of Australian Governments' Communiqu� of 20 April 2010.

Further details of these new arrangements are provided in Budget Paper No. 3.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — building nursing careers

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.6 4.8 7.0 7.6

The Government will provide $21.0 million over four years for an additional 600 enrolled nursing training places and 300 undergraduate nursing scholarships, commencing in January 2011. These training places and scholarships will be specifically for people working in the aged care sector.

Under this measure, $18,000 will be provided to registered training organisations for each enrolled nursing training place provided. Scholarships of $30,000 will be provided to aged care workers undertaking an undergraduate course in nursing. These payments will cover the entire period of training or study.

This measure builds on current workforce training programs that provide training support for people already working in the aged care sector who wish to upgrade their skills and continue their career in aged care.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — expanding clinical placement scholarships for allied health students

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.6 1.6 1.6 1.6

The Government will provide $6.5 million over four years to provide 100 additional clinical placement scholarships per year for allied health students who, as part of their studies, undertake clinical placements for up to six weeks in rural and remote communities.

The scholarships will enhance allied health services in regional areas and will be available to students in disciplines such as psychology, occupational therapy, physiotherapy and podiatry.

This measure builds on the 2008‑09 Budget measure titled Health and Hospitals Reform — Rural Health — Australian Allied Health Rural and Remote Clinical Placement Scholarship program.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health of 12 April 2010.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — exploring regulation of the personal care workforce

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.1 1.5 0.8 -

The Government will provide $3.5 million over three years to explore a national scope of practice and competency framework for personal care workers and assistants in nursing, including in aged care facilities.

Currently, there is no national standard approach to regulation or setting of minimum qualifications for the approximately 121,000 personal care workers and assistants in nursing in Australia. This will provide a basis for a proposal to consider registration of personal care workers as part of the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — more general practice training rotations for junior doctors

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
General Practice Education and Training Limited - 19.1 24.9 32.3 32.8
Department of Health and Ageing - 7.0 8.9 11.5 11.7
Medicare Australia - 0.1 0.2 0.2 0.2
Department of Veterans' Affairs - 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Total - 26.4 34.1 44.2 44.9

The Government will provide $149.6 million over four years to deliver, by 2012‑13, approximately 575 additional places per year in the Prevocational General Practice Placement program. When combined with existing initiatives this is expected to bring the total number of annual places up to 975 by 2013. The program provides opportunities for junior doctors to gain clinical experience in primary care with the aim of encouraging them to take up general practice as a career.

These new places are in addition to the 2009‑10 Budget measure titled Prevocational training for doctors in general practice.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health of 12 April 2010 and the joint press release of 15 March 2010 issued by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — more places on the General Practice Training Program

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
General Practice Education and Training Limited - 2.6 11.1 26.0 44.8
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.6 19.2 76.3 158.5
Medicare Australia - - 0.2 1.0 2.1
Department of Veterans' Affairs - - 0.2 0.7 1.4
Total - 3.3 30.8 104.0 206.9

The Government will provide $344.9 million over four years to increase the number of General Practitioner (GP) training places, to improve access and availability of GP services and help take pressure off the hospital system.

The number of GP training places will grow to 900 in 2011 and up to 1,200 from 2014.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health of 12 April 2010 and the joint press release of 15 March 2010 issued by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — nurse practitioners

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 2.1 6.8 6.3 3.4

The Government will provide $18.7 million over four years for projects to develop, test and evaluate workforce models for the use of nurse practitioners in aged care. These projects will allow aged care facilities to identify workforce models that work well, and then promote these models across the aged care sector, providing better access to primary care for aged care residents.

This proposal builds on the findings from a pilot study into the use of nurse practitioners in aged care. The study found that nurse practitioners played a valuable role in improving resident care, in educating and encouraging other staff, and in liaising with other medical professionals.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — research into aged care staffing levels

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.3 0.3 - -

The Government will provide $0.5 million over two years to conduct research into aged care staffing levels. Research will examine the relationship between staffing and the quality of care, supervision and support for residents with particular types of care needs.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — rural locum scheme for allied health professionals

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.4 1.3 1.3 1.3

The Government will provide $5.3 million over four years to establish a rural locum scheme for allied health professionals. The scheme will provide around 100 locum placements annually, allowing allied health professionals, such as physiotherapists, occupational therapists and podiatrists, in rural areas to undertake professional development opportunities and take leave.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health of 12 April 2010.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — rural locum scheme for nurses

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 7.9 6.9 6.9 7.1

The Government will provide $28.8 million over four years to establish a rural locum scheme for nurses. The scheme will allow nurses in rural areas to take leave and undertake continuing professional development.

The locum service will provide around 750 locum nurses per year with living costs assistance, including accommodation and travel support. It will also provide a locum allowance to improve the attractiveness of locum posts.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — support for practice nurses

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Medicare Australia - 2.1 0.5 0.7 0.5
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.3 66.7 140.7 161.3
Department of Veterans' Affairs - - 3.4 6.2 6.4
Total - 2.5 70.7 147.6 168.2
Medicare Australia - 1.4 - - -

The Government will provide $390.3 million over four years (including capital costs of $1.4 million), to introduce a new practice nurse grants initiative, which will replace existing incentives for general practices to engage practice nurses. This new initiative will be available to general practices that are accredited to access the Practice Incentives Program (PIP) and will subsidise the cost of hiring a practice nurse. Practices will receive $25,000 towards the cost of the salaries of registered nurses and $12,500 towards the salaries of enrolled nurses. These payments will be limited to a maximum of five full‑time equivalent nurses per practice.

One‑off grants of $5,000 will also be provided to practices seeking to attain PIP accreditation. This funding will help cover the costs of attaining accreditation, such as increased staff training and appropriate vaccine storage requirements.

These changes will come into effect on 1 July 2011.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — supporting a professional aged care workforce

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - - - - -

The Government will provide $211.2 million over four years to refocus the existing aged care workforce development programs to deliver more flexible training initiatives that will improve clinical care, assist industry recruitment and retention and create career paths in aged care.

This measure will help increase the number of registered and enrolled nurses in residential aged care by:

  • providing more targeted education and support for registered nurses through improved clinical training and placements in aged care homes, including the provision of clinical supervisor positions;
  • facilitating the establishment of teaching nursing homes;
  • offering financial incentives for aged care providers operating structured graduate programs; and
  • restructuring the undergraduate scholarship scheme to encourage nurses to return to the workforce.

This measure will also focus on improving clinical governance within the aged care sector through more targeted postgraduate scholarships, with specific provision for nurse practitioners and clinical leadership training and mentoring skills.

The training to be offered under this measure will include short courses, certificate qualifications, undergraduate and postgraduate scholarships and clinical placements.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — training and education incentive payments

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 11.3 14.3 17.0 17.4

The Government will provide $59.9 million over four years for incentives to aged care workers to undertake further studies to enhance their career as a personal carer, an enrolled nurse or a registered nurse. Incentive payments will be made in two instalments, one for commencement of studies and the second payment on completion of the qualification.

Incentive payments under this measure will include the following:

  • Certificate III and IV $500 on commencement of study, $500 on completion;
  • Enrolled Nurse $1,000 on commencement of study, $1,500 on completion; and
  • Registered Nurse $2,000 on commencement of study, $3,000 on completion.

This measure builds on current workplace training programs that support people working in the aged care sector, and will reward existing aged care workers who undertake further studies to upgrade qualifications and build their career in aged care.

National Health and Hospitals Network — Workforce — training specialist doctors

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 14.0 28.8 43.4 58.4

The Government will provide $144.5 million over four years to enhance and expand the existing Specialist Training program. The Specialist Training program currently provides approximately 360 places per year to enable medical specialist trainees to rotate through an expanded range of settings beyond traditional public teaching hospitals. This measure will provide for an increase of training places sufficient to bring the total number of annual places up to 900 by 2014.

Further information can be found in the publication A National Health and Hospitals Network: Further Investments in Australia's Health of 12 April 2010 and the joint press release of 15 March 2010 issued by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Health and Ageing.

National Male Health Policy — Building on the strengths of Australian males

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - - - - -

The Government will invest $16.7 million to assist in addressing male health challenges in Australia. The measure will provide:

  • $3.0 million for the Australian Men's Sheds Association. Men's sheds provide a valuable meeting place in the community setting;
  • $6.9 million to establish the first Australian longitudinal study into the social, economic and behavioural determinants of health that affect the length and quality of life of Australian men;
  • $6.0 million to promote the role of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men in their communities, and encourage them to actively participate in their children's and families' lives, particularly during the antenatal period and in early childhood;
  • $0.4 million for regular bulletins on male health to further build the evidence base in male health and inform health professionals, policy developers and consumers;
  • $0.4 million to develop health promotion materials targeting males at key transition points in life; and
  • $50,000 to support GPs to better engage with and support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander males through the Andrology Australia forum in June 2010.

The National Male Health Policy sets out six priority areas for investment. It recognises that while the life expectancy of the Australian man at 78.7 years is among the highest in the world, this is still five years shorter than the expected life of an Australian woman at 83.7 years.

Funding from this measure will be met from within existing resources.

Further information can be found in the press release of 6 May 2010 issued jointly by the Prime Minister, Minister for Health and Ageing and Minister for Indigenous Health, Rural and Regional Health.

Penrith Valley Sports Hub — contribution

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.0 - - -

The Government will provide $1.0 million in 2010‑11 as a final instalment to fulfil its 2007 election commitment of $5.0 million for the construction of improved sporting facilities in Penrith, NSW. This funding will contribute towards upgrading the existing grandstand facilities and delivering improved public amenities at Penrith Football Stadium. It will also provide for an expanded cricket facility at Howell Oval, including new change rooms and multi‑purpose rooms to be used for sports administration and sports injury treatment. This measure will facilitate increased use of the sports hub by a range of community and sporting groups.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — biological disease‑modifying antirheumatic drugs — more cost‑effective arrangements

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - nfp nfp nfp nfp
Department of Veterans' Affairs - nfp nfp nfp nfp
Total - - - - -

The Government will implement more cost‑effective arrangements for funding biological disease‑modifying antirheumatic drugs (bDMARDs) listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme. These new arrangements will only apply to bDMARDs used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.

Under the new arrangements the price paid by the Government (the PBS listed price) for bDMARDs will be reduced. The level of price reduction will be determined following negotiation with the manufacturers of affected drugs. In addition, new restrictions will apply for patients receiving bDMARDs treatment for rheumatoid arthritis. The current access restrictions will be modified to allow up to five bDMARDs treatment courses in a lifetime.

Both the price reduction and the restrictions changes will be consistent with the December 2009 recommendations of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — community information on generic medicines

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 4.2 2.7 1.6 1.6

The Government will provide $10.0 million over four years to the National Prescribing Service to develop and implement a public awareness and education campaign about the safety and effectiveness of generic medicines.

The National Prescribing Service provides information on medicines and resources for consumers and health professionals.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — further pricing reform

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Veterans' Affairs - -2.0 -10.9 -29.0 -29.2
Department of Health and Ageing - -28.7 -180.2 -499.4 -517.2
Total - -30.7 -191.2 -528.4 -546.4

The Government will introduce further reforms to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS), negotiated and agreed with Medicines Australia, to ensure the ongoing sustainability of the PBS and RPBS.

There will be changes to the way prices are determined for medicines on Formulary 2 (F2). F2 medicines are those listed on the PBS and RPBS that currently attract a statutory price reduction when a single brand medicine becomes subject to direct competition, usually when a patent expires.

Pricing of F2 medicines will be reduced firstly by strengthening price disclosure and secondly, by implementing three statutory price reductions.

From 1 October 2010 all F2 medicines will be subject to price disclosure. Price disclosure requires the manufacturer to disclose to the Government the actual price at which the medicine is sold to wholesalers and pharmacies. Over time the price that the Government pays for these medicines will be reduced to reflect the price at which manufacturers are able to supply medicines to the market.

In addition to strengthening price disclosure three further statutory price reductions will be applied to F2 medicines. There are currently two sub‑groups of F2 medicines, F2A and F2T. F2T medicines are those F2 medicines which, under previous PBS reforms, were identified as having a significant difference between the price paid by the Government and the price sold to the market. F2A medicines were those medicines where no significant price difference was identified. These sub‑groups will be combined on 1 October 2010 and the following price reductions will occur:

  • the statutory 12.5 per cent price reduction that currently occurs when medicines move from F1 (single branded medicines) to F2, will be increased to 16 per cent. This change will apply to medicines moving from F1 to F2 on or after 1 February 2011;
  • a 2 per cent price reduction to medicines formerly identified as F2A medicines will occur on 1 February 2011, in addition to the scheduled 2 per cent price reduction on 1 August 2010; and
  • an additional 5 per cent price reduction to medicines formerly identified as F2T medicines will occur on 1 February 2011.

This measure will provide savings of $1.9 billion over five years (including $570.9 million in 2014‑15).

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme — minor new listings

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing 6.8 18.7 26.8 34.6 40.9
Department of Veterans' Affairs 0.3 0.9 1.4 1.8 2.1
Medicare Australia 0.1 0.2 0.2 0.3 0.4
Total 7.1 19.7 28.4 36.7 43.3
Department of Health and Ageing nfp nfp nfp nfp nfp

The Government has agreed to a number of minor new listings on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme and Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme since the Mid‑Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2009‑10, at a cost of $135.1 million over five years. This includes funding for administering payments through Medicare Australia. Pricing agreements negotiated between the Government and the drug manufacturers allow for offsets to the gross cost of some of the minor new listings.

The minor new listings (including extensions to current listings) are medicines that have been listed at either no additional cost to the Budget (because they replace existing listings) or at an estimated cost of less than $10.0 million per annum per listing.

Minor new listings include:

  • Atripla®, for the treatment of Human Immunodeficiency Virus;
  • Effient®, for the treatment of acute coronary syndrome;
  • Sutent®, for the treatment of certain tumours in the digestive tract; and
  • Volibris®, for the treatment of increased blood pressure in the lungs.

Further information can be found in the press releases of 1 October 2009, 1 November 2009, 1 December 2009, 1 January 2010, 1 April 2010 and 1 May 2010 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing and the updates to the Schedule of Pharmaceutical Benefits issued by the Department of Health and Ageing.

Port Augusta magnetic resonance imaging unit — discontinuation

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - -1.2 -1.2 -1.2 -1.2

The Government will not proceed with the initiative to provide Medicare eligibility for a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) unit in Port Augusta, South Australia.

The Government was unable to identify a suitable operator able to provide a viable, ongoing Medicare‑eligible MRI service as part of a comprehensive radiology practice. As a result, the Government is unable to proceed with this initiative.

This measure will provide savings of $4.8 million over four years.

Practice Incentives Program — changes to incentive payments for cervical cancer screening

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Medicare Australia - 0.3 .. - -
Department of Health and Ageing - - -8.0 -7.9 -8.0
Total - 0.3 -8.0 -7.9 -8.0
Medicare Australia - 0.1 - - -

The Government will increase the target that general practices need to achieve in order to receive the Cervical Screening Incentive payment that is available under the Practice Incentives Program.

Practices that screen 50 per cent of eligible patients (women aged between 20 and 69 years of age) currently receive the Cervical Screening Incentive payment. This measure will lift that target to 65 per cent, encouraging practices to screen more eligible women. The increased screening activity will lead to improved early detection and diagnosis of cervical cancer.

This measure will provide savings of $23.5 million over four years.

Private health insurance — supporting lifetime health cover

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.3
Medicare Australia - 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2
Total - 0.6 0.6 0.6 0.6
Department of Health and Ageing - 0.6 0.6 0.6 0.6

The Government will continue to provide information about the lifetime health cover surcharge to individuals who are approaching their 31st birthday and new migrants approaching the one‑year anniversary of being eligible for Medicare payments. The lifetime health cover surcharge adds a financial loading to private health insurance premiums to encourage people to take out private health insurance earlier in life and to maintain their cover. A mailout to these individuals will reduce the risk of them making decisions without having information about the lifetime health cover surcharge.

The cost of this measure will be met from contributions from private health insurers.

Professional Services Review — supporting more investigations of inappropriate practice

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Professional Services Review - 2.0 - - -

The Government will provide an additional $2.0 million in 2010‑11 to the Professional Services Review (PSR) to expand the number of investigations of inappropriate practice by health care professionals.

The PSR has had a substantial increase in its caseload following the expansion of Medicare Australia's compliance audit program announced in the 2008‑09 Budget measure titled Responsible Economic Management Medicare Benefits Schedule increase compliance audits. This measure provided increased audit powers, including access to medical records where appropriate, to assist Medicare Australia in ensuring the appropriate claiming of items on the Medicare Benefits Schedule. This funding will assist the PSR in managing the increased caseload from a larger number of medical professionals being referred since the implementation of Medicare Australia's compliance audit program.

The finalisation of these cases within a reasonable timeframe assists the Government in limiting inappropriate practice and referrals, which in turn helps to maintain the integrity of the Medicare Benefits Scheme and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

Revised arrangements for efficient funding of chemotherapy drugs

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 37.0 20.6 6.3 7.9
Department of Veterans' Affairs - 3.2 2.0 1.6 1.6
Medicare Australia 0.1 1.9 1.7 0.8 0.5
Total 0.1 42.1 24.3 8.7 10.0
Medicare Australia - 1.7 1.1 - -

The Government will implement new arrangements to reduce wastage in the dispensing of intravenous drugs used for chemotherapy treatment. These new arrangements replace the 2008‑09 Budget measure titled Responsible Economic Management — Chemotherapy Drugs — more efficient arrangements. The arrangements have been negotiated, and agreed, with the Pharmacy Guild of Australia, on behalf of relevant stakeholders.

Drugs used for chemotherapy treatment are provided in vials of varying size and this measure will ensure pharmacists are remunerated in a manner which encourages efficient use of vial sizes. Current arrangements result in some infusions being prepared in excess of the prescribed amount or being prepared and not used by the patient.

A new infusion fee of $68.75 will be provided to pharmacists for each infusion in addition to the standard dispensing fee, currently $6.42.

As these revised arrangements deliver a smaller level of savings than the 2008‑09 Budget measure, the revised arrangements impose a cost to the Budget of $95.4 million over six years (including $7.4 million in 2014‑15).

Rural Health — additional funding for cataract surgery

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - 1.0 1.1 1.3 1.6

The Government will provide $5.0 million over four years to provide additional cataract eye operations to patients in rural and remote areas of Australia. These services will be provided through the existing Medical Specialist Outreach Assistance Program (MSOAP), which provides financial assistance to specialists to cover the costs of travelling to rural and remote locations to provide clinical services.

This measure will also provide funding to the Australian Society of Ophthalmologists to administer a database of eye specialists willing to be part of MSOAP, and to promote the availability of these services.

Type 1 Diabetes Insulin Pump program — increased subsidies

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing -0.5 0.5 .. -0.3 -0.2

The Government has increased the maximum subsidy for insulin pumps available under the Type 1 Diabetes Insulin Pump program from $2,500 to 80 per cent of the pump price, capped at $6,400. This program was introduced in 2008‑09 to assist with the cost of purchasing an insulin pump for eligible people under the age of 18 who have type 1 diabetes and a clinical need for an insulin pump.

The program continues to be means‑tested with the maximum subsidy available to eligible young people with an annual family income of up to $64,240, gradually reducing to $500 or 10 per cent of the pump price (whichever is greater) where annual family income is up to $101,045, and no subsidy where annual family income exceeds $101,045. The income thresholds will be indexed on 1 July each year.

Funding for the Insulin Pump program will remain capped at $5.5 million over four years to 2011‑12.

Further information can be found in the press release of 7 February 2010 issued by the Minister for Health and Ageing.

Western Australia's Children's Health Telethon — donation

Expense ($m)
2009‑10 2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14
Department of Health and Ageing - - - - -
Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations - - - - -
Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs - - - - -
Total - - - - -

The Government will provide $1.5 million in 2009‑10 to Channel 7's 2009 Annual Telethon Appeal. The Channel 7 Telethon Trust is a charitable trust supporting children's health in Western Australia. Funds raised support the work of the Princess Margaret Hospital for Children, the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research and the Telethon Speech and Hearing Centre.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resourcing of the Departments of Health and Ageing; Education, Employment and Workplace Relations; and Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs.

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