Difficult to smile on World Oral Health Day

Friday, March 20, 2015

The Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association (AHHA) is calling on Minister Ley to confirm the Government’s commitment to the National Partnership Agreement on Adult Public Dental Services.

“World Oral Health Day is the perfect opportunity for the Minister to renew the Government’s commitment to the $1.3B National Partnership Agreement (NPA).” said Alison Verhoeven, AHHA Chief Executive. 

“The commencement of the NPA was deferred by twelve months in the last Budget and the subsequent lack of action makes us very concerned that the Government is planning is planning to cut the program all together.”

“The significant improvements in waiting times for public dental services that have been achieved in recent years will quickly be reversed if the NPA does not commence as planned.”

“There is a risk that a perfect storm of funding cuts could occur with both the existing NPA  and public sector access to the Child Dental Benefits Schedule set to end on 30 June, and funding for the Voluntary Dental Graduate Year program ending in December.”

“The loss of funding will result in staffing cuts and services reductions across the country and waiting lists will grow.”

“The theme of World Oral Health Day is “Smile for Life” but many Australians will find it difficult to smile knowing that access to dental care will become harder if the Government backs down from another commitment.”

For more information on the AHHA, visit http://ahha.asn.au.

The Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association is the national peak body for public and not-for-profit hospitals, community and primary healthcare services, and advocates for universal, high quality and affordable healthcare to benefit the whole community.

Media enquiries:

Alison Verhoeven

Chief Executive, The Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association

0403 282 501

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