A practical vision for the Australian healthcare system

30 Jul 2015

Last week during AMA Family Doctor Week 2015, AMA President Professor Brian Owler delivered a well-received speech to a crowded National Press Club and a national television audience, in which he set out an achievable ‘practical vision’ for the future of the Australian healthcare system.

Professor Owler highlighted five priorities to set the health system on the right track to serve the needs of the Australian people into the future: recognising the value of health and our healthcare system; having an overarching plan for health care – a long-term bipartisan National Health Strategy; increasing efficiency in healthcare expenditure, without restricting access for people who need it; investing in general practice to keep people well and in the community; and supporting our public hospitals.

In a wide-ranging speech, Professor Owler also covered the failed GP co-payment proposal; the Medicare rebate freeze; Indigenous health; attacks on the so-called ‘Nanny State’ that threaten important public health initiatives such as vaccination; aggressive behaviour by private health insurers; support for doctors who care for asylum seekers; the need to end harassment in the medical profession; and a big ‘thank you’ to Australia’s hardworking GPs.

AMA President speech to the National Press Club

AMA President Q&A transcript - National Press Club Address