Senate debates

Tuesday, 1 December 2020

Questions without Notice

Health Care

2:34 pm

Photo of Michaelia CashMichaelia Cash (WA, Liberal Party, Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business) Share this | Hansard source

I thank Senator Davey for her question and I acknowledge, as all of us on the government side of the chamber do, her commitment to Australians who reside in rural and regional Australia. In particular I acknowledge this Liberal-National government's commitment to improving the health standards of those who reside in rural and regional Australia. In fact, in this year's budget, regional Australians will benefit from improved access to health services, and that's because we have made a $1.2 billion investment to boost health care in the bush. This significant investment of $1.2 billion builds on the reforms that the government has already put in place to expand rural training opportunities and also to address the complex workforce challenges in rural communities.

Our reforms focus on addressing the distribution challenge and we are now investing in new approaches and localised solutions. As a government, we understand that one size does not fit all, in particular when you look at a country that is the size of Australia. In terms of the investment and the policies that we're putting in place, we are very much breaking new ground by investing in unique subregional models of primary care delivery. We are trialling different approaches to address the unique challenges to regional health care. As I've said, these regional models move beyond the one-size-fits-all approach. We're looking at empowering local communities with the tools to integrate the services that they already have, to increase their support in essential services and to find localised solutions. In addition to that, we have a $3.3 million investment that is going to support the delivery of primary care across five subregions in New South Wales, as Senator Davey knows. (Time expired)


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