Created: Thursday, 29 December 2005 Written by Unregistered CorrespFor the fifth consecutive year – and at double the inflation rate - health insurance corporations will raise their premiums, despite making vast profits at the expense of the nation's public hospitals. Under the approving gaze of our caring and sharing Prime Minister John Howard, premiums have risen by nearly 8 per cent a year for the past four years.
As Stephen Duckett, former head of the Health Department and currently Professor of Health Policy at La Trobe University, says: the Commonwealth Government's taxpayer-funded 30 per cent health insurance "rebate" sponsors these rises.
"There's basically no incentive on the funds for efficiency - they're heavily subsidised so it doesn't surprise me that they just want to pass on any costs to the customer and the public," Ducket says.
Given the vast surpluses that health insurance funds have made over the past few years, don't expect the Howard government to say no to this latest grab for easy money by corporate bosses for themselves and their shareholders.
And while John Howard continues his bloody-minded idealogical blitzkrieg, destroying public services and infrastructure while assisting corporate profligacy, the nation's public hospitals continue to crumble.
If you voted for John Howard, you voted for subsidising the greed-driven health insurance INDUSTRY, when instead the Commonwealth Government should be strengthening our public health system… for the COMMON WEALTH.
Think about that next time you or someone you know is waiting for a bed or treatment at a public hospital…