Greg Hunt

Federal Member for Flinders | Minister for Health

Transcripts

Doorstop interview in Sydney

Monday, 27 November 2017

E&OE…

Topics: Record bulk billing rates in Australia and Bennelong; Kristina Keneally caught out over Medicare claims 


JOHN ALEXANDER:
Good morning, and Minister, welcome to Bennelong. Welcome to the Myhealth Medical Centre. I understand you’ve got some good news on bulk billing. 

GREG HUNT:
I do indeed. Look, thanks very much to the amazing John Alexander, who fought for Australia on the international tennis courts, who has a Wimbledon victory and Davis Cup victories, and who has a long history of representing this country and representing the interests of the people of Bennelong in a sincere and absolute and effective and passionate way. 

Now, John mentioned bulk billing. There’s good news for Australia and good news for Bennelong on bulk billing today. 

The latest figures show a record national September quarter bulk billing set of figures. What we have is 85.9 per cent of Australians have been bulk billed in the last quarter.

That means that 85.9 per cent of Australians visited the doctor without having to pay a cent. In Bennelong, it’s even higher, 88.5 per cent. 

So in Bennelong, 88.5 per cent of the people were able to visit magnificent medical clinics such as Myhealth Medical Centre, where we have bulk billing, and that’s an incredible outcome. 

What it means is that Medicare is stronger than ever, that more people are visiting the doctor without having to pay than ever before. 

And that’s a testament to our medical system, it’s a testament to policies that we’ve put in place, and it’s just good news for Australian patients. 

Now, I want to compare this with the sheer dishonesty of what Kristina Keneally, a former Labor Premier, installed by Eddie Obeid, has had to say here in Bennelong, a blow-in to Bennelong who has made utterly false claims. 

There are now deep questions about her trustworthiness. It’s clear that she has learnt nothing from her time where she was Eddie Obeid’s installed Premier of New South Wales. 
And the evidence is very clear. Ms Keneally claimed that she was going to have to wait for more than an hour for Medicare services. 

This is not just questionable, it’s false. The figures that we are releasing today show that not one person, not one person had to wait an hour. 

The average waiting time in the week that she claims she had to wait an hour was less than 13 minutes, but not one person, so there’s no doubt, there’s no debate, there’s no grey area. It’s black and white. 

Kristina Keneally has made claims which are utterly false, so she has deep questions to answer today and tomorrow and everyday up to the election, and that is, when did she attend the Medicare office? How long did she actually wait? 

This goes to trust. 

Has she actually learnt anything, anything at all from her time when she was installed by Eddie Obeid and appointed Ian Macdonald, on Eddie Obeid’s say, to the Ministry. 

So today is about good news for Australian patients, but questions about trust for Kristina Keneally. 

Great. Thank you very much. 

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