AMA steps up campaign against self-education expenses cap
The AMA has ramped up its campaign against the Federal Government’s $2000 cap on tax deductions for work-related self-education expenses, launching a website dedicated to fighting the change and surveying doctors on how the controversial policy will affect their training and education.
AMA President, Dr Steve Hambleton, has issued a call to arms, writing to AMA members urging them to get involved in efforts to reverse the tax change, which he warned would undermine education and quality health care and stifle excellence.
“The Government wants to take an axe to medical education, and the Coalition is going to sit back and let them do it,” Dr Hambleton said.
“We must put our case, and put it strongly and factually. It is your stories, your experiences and your quest for greater skills and knowledge to help your patients that will provide the evidence we need to turn this decision around.”
Doctors have been asked to complete a survey detailing how much they spend each year on self-education and training, and how the $2000 cap will affect their professional development.
In a determined push to bring the issue home for every federal Member of Parliament before the 14 September election, the AMA has also launched a dedicated campaign website –doctors4health.com.au – enabling doctors to directly email their local MPs highlighting their objections to the tax change.
More than 4500 doctors responded to the AMA’s initial survey on the issue, with 98 per cent expressing their strong objection to the change, and Dr Hambleton urged doctors to maintain their rage.
“All politicians need to hear your stories, and they need to feel your anger,” he said.
“The strength of our membership can and will make a difference.”
20 June 2013
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Published: 21 Jun 2013