There has been a huge outcry among doctors who have been outraged by the decision that healthy patients who visit their doctors simply to get their e-health records set up will not receive a Medicare rebate. Moreover, the body that had been put in place to control these e-health records has pulled out of the road show that was slated to happen in Malaysia next month to brief the Australian surgeons regarding the new system. The National e-Health Transition Authority, had planned a mockup to show the Australian surgeons how the e-health computer system is meant to work.
The reasons behind these recent turn of event have been stated as the tight fiscal environment. NEHTA has however issued a statement stating that it was closely monitoring the situation and reviewing the schedule, but due to the scenario that has been put in front of them, they have been forced to make this decision.
The air of contention has been raised with a new threat coming from the Australian Medical Association, stating that it will not sign the scheme because of stringent regulations. According to it, the scheme provides excessive powers to departmental officers to oversee the records of surgeries conducted by the doctors. AMA secretary-general Francis Sullivan has written to the Department of Health and Ageing stating that they cannot adhere to these regulations, which is why it should be changed.
There is a fear among Government that there could be crooked medical people who would try to make money by calling all their patients to set up a personally controlled e-Health Record without any need for it. Due to this fact Health Minister Tanya Plibersek has categorically stated that the rebate that is being issued to doctors would only be paid in situations where the patients were seeing that particular doctor on other health issues.
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