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Anthony Albanese hopes to revive election campaign with funding for urgent care clinics

The federal opposition will seek to capitalize on health care shortcomings highlighted by the deadly COVID-19 pandemic as Leader Anthony Albanese works to get his campaign back on track.

After failing to know key economic markers on the first day of campaigning, the opposition leader vowed to “shake himself”.

He will use a campaign stop in Melbourne to announce a new policy for urgent care clinics, which aims to reduce pressure on hospital emergency departments.

Mr Albanese has sought to make health care a central issue in his bid to bring Labor back into government, having earlier announced sweeping plans for the aged care sector.

If elected, Labor promises to fund 50 centres, with treatment billed wholesale, at a cost of $135 million over four years.

The clinics will be based in doctors’ surgeries and community health centers in at least 50 locations across Australia and will be open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

They will treat non-life threatening injuries such as sprains, broken bones, wounds, minor ear and eye problems and minor burns.

In a statement, Mr Albanese said the trial would be based on international models like that of New Zealand, which has one of the lowest emergency department attendance rates in the developed world.

“Labour’s Medicare Urgent Care Clinics will mean more families will receive top-quality care from a nurse or doctor without having to wait in a hospital emergency department,” he said. .

“These clinics are a key part of the Labor Party’s plan to bolster Medicare by making it easier to see a doctor.”

More people coming to the emergency room

Last month, the South Australian Labor Party successfully used the problems of ramping up hospitals and overwhelmed emergency services to win state elections.

According to the latest report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), patients are staying longer in emergency departments and waiting longer to be seen.

The report found that in 2020-21, the number of emergency department presentations increased by 6.9% compared to 2019-2020, despite continued health care restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic. COVID-19 in progress.

The average time a patient stays in the emergency room has increased by one hour since 2016-2017.

The Greens’ Adam Bandt will launch a policy to bring dental services into Medicare.(ABC News: Nicholas Haggarty)

Greens pledge billions for dental care

Greens leader Adam Bandt will also use a National Press Club address today to launch his party’s policy to integrate dental services into Medicare.

Under this plan, anyone eligible for Medicare would be eligible for dental care, including oral surgeries and orthodontic treatment.

The policy has been costed by the Parliamentary Budget Officer and amounts to $8 billion a year, or $77.6 billion over the next decade.

In a statement, Mr Bandt said the Greens would introduce a tax on billionaires to pay for politics.

“Last time the Greens were in the balance of power, we included dental care in Medicare for children, and now we’re going to finish the job of bringing dental care into Medicare for everyone,” he said. -he declares.

“The Greens will make Clive Palmer pay more taxes so you can fix your teeth.”

The Greens hope to increase their senatorial team from 9 to 12 senators and believe they can maintain the balance of power in the upper house.

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