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More access to GP bulk billing in Molonglo Valley with new GP clinic in Coombs

By Lachlan Roberts 23 October 2018 3
Bec Cody MLA, Adrian Watts (National Health Co-op), Senator David Smith, Minister Meegan Fitzharris and Blake Wilson (National Health Co-op).

Bec Cody MLA, Adrian Watts (National Health Co-op), Senator David Smith, Minister Meegan Fitzharris and Blake Wilson (National Health Co-op). Photo: Supplied by ACT Government

More bulk billing services will soon be available in the growing Molonglo Valley with the National Health Co-op to establish a new GP clinic in Coombs, thanks to an ACT Government grant.

ACT Health Minister Meegan Fitzharris said a third Bulk Billing General Practices Grant had been awarded to the Co-op for their new clinic in Coombs, making it easier for residents in Molonglo Valley to find a local bulk billing doctor.

Located within the Molonglo Health Hub, the Coombs clinic will be the tenth to be opened under the National Health Co-op, and the first in the Molonglo Valley. The new clinic will have space for up to 10 bulk billing GPs as well as bulk billing psychologists, dieticians, nurses and other allied healthcare providers.

Ms Fitzharris said the $350,000 grant will help establish the 11-room clinic and will have a big impact on the level of local healthcare available for residents in the growing Molonglo Valley.

“We know Canberra has some of the lowest bulk-billing rates in the country, particularly in the south of Canberra. The ACT Government is encouraging more GPs to bulk bill to make it easier for people, particularly those most in need, to find a local doctor who they can rely on,” Ms Fitzharris said.

“The new clinic will not only incorporate bulk billing for a visit to the GP but for other primary health care services as well, making it multidisciplinary.”

National Health Co-op CEO Adrian Watts said the Co-op was strongly supportive of the ACT Government’s efforts to improve access to bulk billed primary health care services.

“This new clinic in Coombs, funded under this grant, will enable local residents of the growing Molonglo Valley to access affordable health care services much closer to home,” Mr Watts said.

“The ACT Government’s investment in the establishment of the new clinic in Coombs recognises the importance of the National Health Co-op as a community-owned provider of affordable health care in the ACT.”

The new Coombs clinic is the third recipient of these grants, following last week’s announcement of two successful grant recipients in Tuggeranong. Ms Fitzharris believes the Bulk Billing Grants Fund is the right incentive to get more clinics and more doctors offering bulk billing to more patients in Canberra’s south.

The Government’s total investment of $1 million in more bulk billing GPs for Canberra’s south delivers on Labor’s election commitment to help more people get access to quality affordable primary health care.


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More access to GP bulk billing in Molonglo Valley with new GP clinic in Coombs
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Capital Retro 2:04 pm 24 Oct 18

Yes, demanding full free health care is an entrenched part of the Australian culture, especially with people who don’t pay the Medicare levy.

Even a small co-payment is deemed to be an alien concept as Joe Hockey was reminded about.

Mel Smith 6:44 am 24 Oct 18

But will they offer bulk billing to everyone or just those with a concession card? Just because people don’t have a concession card doesn’t mean bulk billing isn’t needed....and in Canberra it’s almost impossible to find. Instead you’re looking st $85 up front for an appointment, which adds up when you are paying once a week.

    Blake Wilson 12:25 pm 24 Oct 18

    Mel, the NHC bulk bills everyone all the time for all it's services. It's also a patient owned charity that exists for the sole purpose of providing affordable healthcare. More info is available at www.nhc.coop/about

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