$6 co-payment rejected by MO readers

An online poll of over 700 readers found 56% of respondents rejected the idea. 

Only about a third (36%) supported the concept. 

The poll comes amid renewed debate over the need for an overhaul of the way GP services are funded, with Health Minister Peter Dutton questioning whether those able to afford to contribute to the cost of their treatment should expect to be bulk-billed.

The minister’s comments followed the release of the now infamous policy document penned by Terry Barnes, a former senior adviser to Prime Minister Tony Abbott when he was health minister. 

He argued that a co-payment would create a much needed “price signal” to patients regarding the value of GP services.

A host of GPs have since contacted MO to express their opposition to the proposal, echoing the criticisms of the AMA that it would discourage complex patients from seeking vital treatment.