29 Jun 2012

Treasury urged Government to set higher prescription fee

7:14 pm on 29 June 2012

The Treasury urged the Government to raise prescription charges to double the amount the Cabinet eventually settled on.

Papers released by the Treasury on Friday also show it believes there is scope for people to pay more for healthcare generally.

The Government raised prescription charges shortly before the Budget from $3 to $5 an item from January, saving $40 million a year from 2013.

But the Budget papers show the Treasury recommended a $10 maximum charge for everyone except community service card holders.

Treasury also said people fund their own oral health, hearing aids, disability support and aged residential care and that there is scope to extend this to elective surgery, hospital stays, diagnostic tests and obstetrics.