Malcolm Turnbull has today defied a direct order from the Senate, so he can continue his unfair attack on pathology and diagnostic imaging patients.

In parliament today the Assistant Minister for Health has defied a senate order to produce the regulations the government will use to implement its $650 million in cuts to bulk billing incentives.

The minister has done this to avoid the rejection of these measures by the Parliament, defying both the will of the Australian people and its elected representatives.

This tactic will enable the government to now delay tabling these regulations until after the parliament rises, denying the Senate the opportunity overturn these cuts before they come into effect.

This means patients being treated for cancer, and other serious health conditions, could now be forced to fork out thousands of dollars upfront for crucial scans and tests from July 1, the day before the federal election.

This is despite the fact that over 500,000 Australians have signed a petition opposing the Liberals' $650 million cuts to Medicare.

Families know these cuts will hurt the most vulnerable in our community and stop them from getting the necessary tests at an early stage.

The very people who shouldn’t have to suffer more will be forced to pay more or put off getting tests because of Mr Turnbull. 

Today’s sneaky move to sidestep parliamentary scrutiny confirms that a vote for the Turnbull Liberals is a vote to cut Medicare.

It confirms that while Mr Turnbull is soft on the top end of town he is hard on people with cancer and diabetes who will have to pay more for critical tests.


Senator Katy Gallagher is Labor's Shadow Minister for Mental Health, Shadow Minister for Housing and Homelessness and the Shadow Minister Assisting the Leader on State and Territory Relations

This is a joint release with Catherine King MP, Labor's Shadow Minister for Health.

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