Evaluation of the COAG Section 19 (2) Exemptions Initiative – Improving Access to Primary Care in Rural and Remote Areas Final Report


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Evaluation of the COAG Section 19 (2) Exemptions Initiative – Improving Access to Primary Care in Rural and Remote Areas Final Report

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Publication date:

October 14, 2021

Last update:

December 17, 2021

Publication type:

Reporting

Targeted audience:

General public

The description:

Section 19 (2) of the Health Insurance Act 1973 (the Act) prohibits the payment of health insurance benefits when other public funding is provided for that service. COAG’s Section 19 (2) exemptions initiative replaces that section of the law and allows payment of Medicare benefits for services approved by approved eligible sites. COAG’s Section 19 (2) Exemptions Initiative – Improving Access to Primary Care in Rural and Remote Areas was introduced in 2006 to support the delivery of primary health care services in small communities. rural and remote. The Initiative aims to provide patients with better access to primary health care services at the local level, including after hours in small public hospitals and health services. The Initiative recognizes that many patients in small, rural and remote towns have limited access to primary health care services and in response to the lack of private practices, many rural and remote public hospitals have employed doctors to deliver the services. of primary health care available.

The evaluation of the Initiative assessed the extent to which the Initiative has been appropriate, effective, efficient, and of quality and value to the Commonwealth and participating jurisdictions. As part of the assessment, consultations were carried out with a range of stakeholders, including states and the Northern Territory (noting that the Australian Capital Territory is not an eligible jurisdiction). Jurisdictions were invited to respond to the preliminary findings of the assessment which were taken into account in finalizing the report. The findings of the evaluation provided valuable information on the operation and implementation of the Initiative.

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