Medical tests and procedures subsidised by Medicare could face severe cuts, with the Federal Government carrying out a "spring clean" of the entire system.
There is concern that invasive procedures such as knee arthroscopies(knee joint examination) and tonsillectomies are being ordered unnecessarily or for the wrong people.
Health Minister Sussan Ley says,
I wonder if this cohort consists mainly of the elderly.
Some examples of procedures being looked at.
"Lower back pain — a lot of people with lower back pain get sent for a barrage of scans, when really, the evidence is telling us now that physiotherapy and exercise are probably the first line of treatment."
Other services flagged for review include bone mineral density testing for older people, especially those over age 70, and colonoscopies.
The review began earlier this year and is being carried out by working groups of doctors and medical experts across the country.
Ms Ley said, "Only patients know if they actually benefit from what happens and get better or whether they are unwell and incapacitated for a long time for no real improvement."
The Health Department is apparently after feedback from the public about their experience as patients.
Anyway I'm optimistic this time around.
I am urging people to participate, maybe under the new PM we might be listened to. I hope!