2010-11 Budget – Health Overview
Spending in the Health portfolio for the period 2010-11 will total $7.3 billion over five years, including 2009-10, to realise the National Health and Hospitals Network (NHHN) that will be funded nationally, and run locally.
The key announcements include significant investment to ensure better afterhours access to GPs through building of new GP super and primary health care clinics, investment in training for nurses, and ehealth records for every Australian that wants one.
For access to the full Department of Health and Ageing Portfolio Budget Statement please click here.
Key spending announced in this Budget for NHHN
There is an extra $2.2billion of investment for the NHHN in this Budget. This includes:
- $417 million investment in GP and primary care services, supported by Medicare Locals. Aimed at improving after-hours access.
- $355 million to deliver 23 new GP super clinics and upgrade 425 GP and primary health care clinics.
- $523 million invested in training and supporting nurses, including nurses working in general practices. Aimed at improving prevention and chronic disease management.
- $467 million to introduce electronic health records for every Australian that wants one from 1 July 2012.
Entire Health service delivery investments
• $3.52 billion to improve access to public hospital services, including $1.62 billion to deliver 1,316 subacute care beds.
• $1.2 billion for the health workforce – to train more health professionals and make the most of the skills and dedication of our existing workforce.
• $812.9 million to improve access in the community to high-quality aged care, including $532.9 million in new funding.
• $772 million to strengthen access to primary care services, including around 23 new GP Super Clinics and improved access to GP after hours services.
• $466.7 million to develop and implement a national system for personally controlled electronic health records.
• $449.2 million to deliver coordinated primary health care for people with diabetes.
• $266 million – to establish governance arrangements under the Network.
• $175.8 million to improve our mental health system, including $123.2 million in new funding.
• $52.6 million for prevention, including significant new initiatives to tackle smoking and binge drinking.
- Government will take full funding and policy responsibility for aged care.
- These reforms include a transfer to the Australian Government of current resourcing for aged care services from the Home and Community Care (HACC) program (except in Victoria). In aged care, these reforms will support the development of a nationally consistent aged care system, covering basic home care through to nursing homes.
- The Australian Government will invest $812.9 million in aged care, including $280 million to the States and Territories to support older Australians eligible for aged care who are staying a long time in public hospitals.
- This investment will support more than 5,000 places or beds comprising 2,000 aged care places to support long stay older patients in hospitals, 2,500 additional residential care places in areas of high need supported by zero real interest loans, 286 sub-acute beds or bed equivalents in Multi-Purpose Services, and 300 additional aged care places for multi-service places.
- Governments will work together to release more land for aged care facilities and accelerate planning approval processes so that aged care facilities and places become operational more quickly.
- The Australian Government will take responsibility for primary mental health care services for common disorders such as anxiety and depression, including those currently provided by the states and territories.
- The Government will provide $175.8 million to improve the mental health system, including $123.2 million in new funding. This includes $78.8 million over four years to deliver up to 30 new youth-friendly services and to provide extra funding for the existing 30 headspace sites.
- Once the new sites are fully established they should provide support and early intervention services for an additional 20,000 young people each year.
- Funding of $25.5 million over four years will be provided to expand the Early Psychosis Prevention and Intervention Centre (EPPIC) model beyond Victoria, building on the successful implementation of this model in Victoria.
- $13 million over two years will be provided to employ an additional 136 mental health nurses and provide an estimated 11,700 extra services.
- The Mental Health Nurse Incentive Program is demand-driven and the places will be available nationally. Some $58.5 million over four years will be directed to care packages to better support up to 25,000 people with severe mental illness, to be delivered by Access to Allied Psychological Services arrangements. Funding and packages will be broadly distributed to services on a per capita basis.
- The Australian Government will provide $466.7 million over two years to establish the national components of a secure national system for personally controlled electronic health records.
- This investment will provide the national core infrastructure, governance standards and tools to enable all Australians who choose to participate to register online from 2012-13.
- The national system will enable an individual’s key health information to be securely available when and where it is required for their care across the health and hospital system.
- It will improve the efficiency and support the effectiveness of health services.
- It will assist to reduce the human and financial costs associated with poor health information availability.
- Implementation of the national system will initially focus on people who have the most contact with the health and hospital system. These include people with Chronic and complex health conditions:
- Older Australians.
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
- Mothers and their newborn children.
- A key step in the establishment of the national system is the participation of a number of lead implementation sites. This will allow a staged approach to the rollout and careful evaluation of the system. It will also provide early benefits for patients and their health care providers.
- The Government is providing $38.5 million over four years to further expand the voluntary rollout of Opal fuel to regional and remote Indigenous communities.
- The expanded rollout of Opal fuel will be accompanied by a comprehensive communication strategy, which targets communities and tourists. The funding also provides for the collection of data to assess the effectiveness of the Opal fuel program in reducing petrol sniffing.
- Measures that received initial funding late in 2009-10 will be consolidated during 2010-11 as the basis for further expansion in 2011-12. These include the Medical Specialist Outreach Assistance Program – Indigenous Chronic Disease, the Urban Specialist Outreach Assistance Program and Care Coordination and Supplementary Services.
- Training for health professionals in chronic disease self-management sessions/activities will commence in 2010-11 and 42 healthy lifestyle workers and 40 tobacco workers (Regional Tobacco Coordinators and Tobacco Action Workers) will be recruited and trained.
- This new workforce will work with individuals, families and communities in an initial 20 regions across Australia.
Community pharmacy and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
- The five year Fifth Community Pharmacy Agreement (the Agreement) between the Australian Government and the Pharmacy Guild of Australia will commence on 1 July 2010.
- The Agreement provides $15.4 billion in remuneration for around 5,000 community pharmacies for dispensing Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) medicines, the provision of a range of patient-focused programs and services, and the Community Services Obligation arrangements with pharmaceutical wholesalers.
- The Agreement also includes a commitment to maintain location rules for approved pharmacies as well as maintaining the commitment to rural pharmacy. The Agreement will result in a gross saving of $1 billion against Australian Government forward estimates.
- The Agreement provides funding to enhance patient medication management, including a focus on improving the quality use of medicines by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. New programs will be introduced as part of a quality framework, with incentives available to accredited community pharmacies that deliver high quality patient services.
- The Australian Government has for the first time entered into a long term agreement with the innovative medicines industry to jointly manage the PBS. This Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) will provide the Government with savings of $1.9 billion from 2010-11 to 2014-15 through a range of statutory price reductions and the expansion and acceleration of the existing price disclosure program from 162 to over 1,600 brands of medicines.
- The Australian Government will invest approximately $38.2 million to replenish elements of the National Medical Stockpile that will expire over the next 12 months, as well as restock material that was used during the response to pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza.