Concern for chronic disease patients, as new dental plan praised
The new scheme effectively achieves Labor’s long-held goal of killing off the Howard-era Chronic Disease Dental Scheme, which it has said is too open to rorting by dentists and wealthy patients. A far-reaching audit of that scheme found 46 dentists owed Medicare $21.5 million, mostly because of administrative errors.
The opposition and dentists have complained the audit was a witch-hunt to justify closing the CDDS down. An opposition private members bill to bail out dentists affected by the audit was defeated by Labor. Human Services Minister Kim Carr has since ordered a “reassessment” of