Child health left out of primary care vision

AUSTRALIA’S primary healthcare blueprint has come under fire for failing to put young children and mothers “first and foremost” on the agenda.

At a recent Australian National University public lecture, Edith Cowan University senior research fellow Dr Daniel McAullay (PhD) said despite a large proportion of Australia’s national health expenditure being related to failures in childhood healthcare, little had been done to address the issue.

Speaking to MO, Dr McAullay said neither the national primary healthcare strategy, nor the recent COAG hospital funding agreements contained a cohesive plan for caring for young children.

While child and adolescent health was mentioned in the primary healthcare plan, Building a 21st Century Primary Health Care System, Dr McAullay said it was not prominent enough.

“[It] needs to be first and foremost up-front. There’s very little in that area,” he said.