The acute GP shortage across the Eden-Monaro will now be subject to a Senate Inquiry.
Labor called for the inquiry last week in a bid to investigate the critical lack of doctors across regional and rural Australia.
“This is really great news for people across the Eden-Monaro,” Federal Member for Eden-Monaro Kristy McBain said.
“Our regional health network is in crisis. Too many people are being forced to wait weeks to see a GP – if they can see a GP at all. And the problem is only getting worse.
“COVID-19 has highlighted the holes and gaps in our health care system, and none are more obvious than the shortage of GPs across regional NSW.
“But this issue isn’t new, people living in the regions have been battling a critical lack of GPs for far too long.
“This inquiry will investigate why our region is particularly affected by a lack of GPs and should come up with practical solutions to fix it.
“This needs to be more than another box ticking exercise. Our communities are seeking firm action and a commitment to solutions.”
The Senate Inquiry will examine the Government’s current classification system, the stronger Rural Health Strategy, GP training reforms, and the effects of the Medicare rebate freeze.
The Inquiry will also assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on doctor shortages in outer metropolitan, rural, and regional Australia.
“I’ve been campaigning on this issue for a long time now and while I welcome the Inquiry, I’ll continue to advocate to make sure the issues in outer metropolitan areas don’t overshadow the significant issues affecting regional communities,” Ms McBain said.
“Thank you to the GPs who have been working tirelessly to support our communities and who also took time to meet with me and outline the issues affecting their practices and raise their concerns,” Ms McBain said.
“I also thank the 500 Eden-Monaro residents who signed my regional health petition, shared their story and helped me to advocate for our communities.
I’ll keep being a voice for our communities, because now more than ever Eden-Monaro residents deserve access to timely and quality health care.”
You can make a submission to the inquiry here: https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/OnlineSubmission