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Fund health and medical research with a universal, progressive and FAIR tax - NOT with a GP tax

This petition had 1,970 supporters

Great societies improve health and wellbeing throughhealth and medical research. Public funds should provide most of the funding raised through universal, fair and progressive taxation. This shares the load according to capacity to pay.

The idea of taxing people who go to the GP and then holding them to ransom by saying the GP tax will be used to fund medical research is unethical. Our society isdiminished when an unfair burden falls on patients to fund research.

 Seven dollars for each visit to a GP will create a hole in many people’s budgets. Imagine a pensioner with achronic disease such as diabetes, heart disease or dementia. They will make frequent visits to the GP and require medicines. Now they are to be told they need to pay because otherwise medical research won’t be funded.

 In Fiona Stanley’s words, the co-payments “will affect those who are the sickest, most marginalised, the poorest”.

This research should be funded through our normal taxation system. We all want to see more health and medical research, but the government has many other funding and taxing options.

Surely a country like Australia, with low debt levels and low taxes by OECD standards, can afford to fund vital research by involving everybody, according to their capacity to pay, working together for a fairer and healthier society.

Why should we educate GPs for all these years to turn them in to tax collectors? Why not let them get on with the job of managing and preventing disease in the community, working with people who most need their services and who should not be denied access to the care they need?

Medical and public health researchers who work day in and day out to cure disease and keep us healthy should not be used as an excuse to undermine Medicare and penalise the poor. And researchers should not have to face the prospect that their funding may come at the cost of reducing services to those who need them most.

We need research targeted to promoting health and reducing the burden of disease. Not hastily thought out schemes that see money diverted from the health system, and effectively penalise those who are sick anddisadvantaged. A compassionate country, caring for all, can and should be better than this.

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Medical and Health Researchers against the GP Tax needs your help with “Hon Joe Hockey: Fund health and medical research with a universal, progressive and FAIR tax - NOT with a GP tax”. Join Medical and Health Researchers against the GP Tax and 1,969 supporters today.