GP tax to impact aged care, dementia and chronically ill

AGED care providers will be out of pocket hundreds of thousands of dollars and elderly people with chronic diseases will be impacted by the Federal Government's GP Tax.

This was the message from the Australian Medical Association, an Aged Care provider and politicians today.

Opposition leader Bill Shorten held a press conference this morning in Melbourne with Doutta Galla Aged Care Services chairman Bruce Mildenhall, who claimed the tax would leave the network of community-based aged care facilities out of pocket $800,000 a year.

"This is a dreadful attack on some of the most vulnerable and helpless people in our community," Mr Mildenhall said.

"As of tomorrow, $800,000 is being ripped out of our annual Budget. These services, these therapies that help provide a decent and reasonable quality of life for people who are severely affected by dementia are going to disappear unless severe cuts are made to other operating parts of our budget."

He said dementia was one of the top 10 health issues facing Australia.

Meanwhile, the Australian Medical Association and Katter Australia Party hit out at the impacts the tax will have on elderly people with chronic disease.

KAP leader Bob Katter
KAP leader Bob Katter Contributed

North Queensland communities who are already hurting due to the cost of petrol, insurance, rates and general health care will feel the pain at the hip pocket if there is any increase to the cost of prescription medications.

"Older people-and the demographic in Far North Queensland is very old people-can pay upwards of $100 a month for pharmaceuticals. Once you get over the age of 69 or 70, you are looking at $100 a month at least. We are talking about an extra $20 here.

"It does not sound like much, but if they pay, as we do in North Queensland, $3,500 for rates and $3,500 for insurance-that is half of their income gone on insurance and rates. I do not know how people are able to afford a feed! We have had two cases of people pulling their own teeth out with a pair of pliers because they could not afford a dentist" Mr Katter said.

 AMA Associate Professor Brian Owler said Australia's biggest challenge in terms of healthcare is going to be an ageing population and the burden of chronic disease.

"As we get older, we often have more chronic diseases. It doesn't mean people are sick, but it means their disease needs to be managed and the right person to do that is going to be the person's GP," he said.

"About 50% between the ages of 65 and 74 have five or more chronic diseases that need to be managed.

"I don't think there's any evidence to say at the moment that we have a widespread problem with unnecessary visits to the GP from elderly folk that are going to simply have a chat."

Topics:  australian medical association bob katter gp tax

$20-million boost for Rocky's road upgrades

The expected route of the the Rockhampton Road Train Access upgrade.  Photo: Contributed

Federal Government announcement today about road funds

Rockhampton nightlife October 22

L-R Melissa Dwyer and Anton White at the Ginger Mule. Photo Liam Fahey / Morning Bulletin

All the action from the Rockhampton club scene over the weekend.

Jobs to apply for in CQ right now

Builder handyman with construction tools. House renovation background.

Jobs available across the region

Local Partners

$2000 raised for SES at morning tea

UP to 150 people attended a morning tea at the Heritage Village in aid of the Rockhampton SES hosted by the Rockhampton and District Benefits Association.

Your chance to win

Learn More

Former Split Enz front man Tim Finn finds new niche

Singer Tim Finn has written the music for theatre production Ladies in Black.

Musician finds his way to theatre

WHAT'S ON: Your guide to entertainment and events this weekend

AWARD WINNING SHOW: Tequila Mockingbird can be seen at St Brednan's College, Yeppoon on Saturday.

LOOKING for something to do this weekend?

Garage Sale Trail finds treasure in trash

Richard Morvell from Trendy Trash Rockhampton, Cr Neil Fisher, and Craig Dunglison, Manager of Rockhampton Regional Waste and Recycling gear up for Garage Sale Trail.

Bargains galore on offer at garage sales this weekend

Check out some fashions from the Coast festival

FASHION: Ocean Zen range.

Images from the Sunshine Coast Fashion Festival show what's hot

Australian Survivor's magician Matt out of tricks

Australian Survivor contestant Matt Tarrant.

SHOW'S power couple looks unstoppable in race to the finish.

Top floor teams take out The Block's terrace week

Kim and Chris pictured on their winning outdoor terrace in a scene from The Block.

RIVALS Kim and Chris and Julia and Sasha tie in final week of work.

Bob Dylan slammed as 'arrogant' for Nobel silence

Nobel Prize winner Bob Dylan.

Singer the controversial winner of literature Nobel

Shannen Doherty reveals fear of dying in post on chemo

Actor Shannen Doherty shared this image of her lying in a hospital bed after a chemotherapy session.

Actor has been fighting cancer since 2015

Eddie Redmayne's stage fright on latest Harry Potter film

Actor Eddie Redmayne stars in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

Actor felt like kid again when he got to film with a wand

Hinterland horse stud passed in for $8.25 million

UNREAL: This Maleny estate is incredible.

12-bedroom hinterland horse stud still available

Hit songwriter's Noosa mansion on market

SPECIAL PLACE: The Cintamani estate is going to tender, marketed by Tom Offermann Real Estate.

Is this Queensland's best property?

Kiwi siblings snap up Dotcom mansion for $32.5m

The new toy company owners of the Coatesville mansion want replace any controversy with positivity and fun. Photo / Barfoot and Thompson

The trio paid $32.5 million for the property in June

New $200 million development will create 580 jobs

Cassie And Josh with baby Alfie and daughter Andee. They have bought at new Lennox Head development Epiq.

Majority of new positions will be given to Northern Rivers locals

Cherrabah's mega resort plans axed

PLANS for a massive development at Cherrabah have been scrapped.

What our mayor thinks of the new draft SEQPlan

The plan to use the innovative technology as part of the new Maroochydore CBD was cemented on site today when Mayor Mark Jamieson and Envac Asia Region president Chun Yong Ha formally signed the contract for the $20 million underground waste collection system.

New plan accommodates Sunshine Coast Council's vision for growth.