The GSD notes the 100% increase to the public of the cost of prescriptions and the calculated reduction in the number of people who can access free prescriptions.
The GSD have long been very concerned about identifying, and weeding out waste and reviewing procurement policies to increase efficiencies across the board so that the taxpayer can get the very best out of our medical services. However, this measure is not about that and at a time of marked cost of living increases threatens to affect the vulnerable or low-income families worst of all.
The recent emergence of the Government as the flag bearers of economic prudence is wearing very thin indeed – they have done very little in the last 10 years to control spending. Since 2015, we have warned the Government of their insatiable appetite for spending like there was no tomorrow. Tomorrow has well and truly arrived and instead of focusing on improving efficiencies and health care to our community, the Government demonstrate that they are hell bent on targeting those who are most affected by this measure, namely, the elderly and the health vulnerable.
Shadow Health Minister Elliott Phillips MP said:
“It is well known that a significant majority of people in need of prescriptions are the elderly and the health vulnerable as well as young children. The hike in prescriptions cost will likely hit these groups of people more. We are living through a cost-of-living crisis and this measure will hit the pockets of those people most in need. I called on the Government to publish the Reset, Restart and Recover strategy so that the Government could explain to the public in detail what measures it intends to take to restore our health service. The drip feeding of measures in the context of the health care crisis is likely to significantly impact on public confidence in the ability of the Government to do so especially when these measures do not deal with the issues of concern on patient services and simply layer more financial burdens on patients.”