The Federal Member for Bendigo, Lisa Chesters, today announced that a Labor Government will restore the funding cut from the Castlemaine and Maldon Hospital by the Liberal Government.
"The Federal Government should pay its fair share to ensure Central Victorian Hospitals have the operating budget they need day to day.
"Labor's announcement today means that if Labor is elected on 2 July, the Castlemaine and Maldon Hospitals will have extra funding," said Ms Chesters.
A Labor Government will restore the National Health Reform Agreement for four years, at the originally agreed funding formula of 50 per cent of growth in costs based on the National Efficient Price, and provide additional support to the States and Territories to reduce waiting times in public hospital emergency departments and for elective surgery.
Labor will boost hospital funding by $2 billion more than the Liberals over the next four years. This will mean reduced hospital waiting times, more beds, more doctors and more nurses.
The Liberals scrapped Labor’s National Health Reform Agreement and returned to an outdated model of indexation, which saw cuts to hospitals across the country.
"In their first budget the Liberal Government cut $29 million of Central Victorian hospital funding.
"It was a shock to the States that the Federal Liberal Government made such savage cuts to our local hospitals,” said Ms Chesters.
While Labor’s new commitment does not restore all of the funding ripped out by the Liberals, it restores Labor’s agreement for the next four years and provides certainty for a new agreement to be negotiated under a Labor Government.
Labor will also provide an additional $100 million over two years to strengthen the frontline of Australia’s health care system – primary care.
Building a stronger primary care system will provide greater day-to-day health care for tens of thousands of Australians, meaning fewer people will end up in hospital.
This builds on Labor’s commitment to reverse Malcolm Turnbull’s GP Tax by stealth – his Medicare freeze – from 1 July 2017.
Only a Shorten Labor Government will protect Medicare and properly invest in our public hospitals.
For more information on Labor’s plan for hospitals, visit: www.100positivepolicies.org.au/stronger_medicare_strengthening_hospitals
For more information on Labor’s plan for new models of primary care, visit: www.100positivepolicies.org.au/strengthening_medicare_new_models_of_care