Catalogue Number: 1572
Vision care in Australia: focussing on the role of optometry - a report for the Australian Optometrical Association
Sub-Category: Reports and submissions
Corporation: Access Economics
Year Of Publication/Manufacture: 1993
Place Of Publication/Manufacture: Canberra
Publisher/Manufacturer: Access Economics
Description Of Item: A4 size booklet, stiff card white printed cover, 20 pages, being a report by Access Economics for the Australian Optometrical Association to counter the proposal in the 1993 to remove optometrical services from Medicare benefits.
Historical Significance: In 1953 the Australian Government, under Prime Minister Robert Menzies, introduced a medical health insurance scheme that paid benefits for primary eye care consultations provided by ophthalmologists but not for those provided by optometrists. There was a significant market shift from optometry to ophthalmology in the next two decades. In 1975 the Labour government, under Prime Minister Gough Whitlam, established Medibank and as a result of intensive long term lobbying by the Australian Optometrical Association optometry services were included in this new health insurance scheme. This was the first time a non-medical health profession had been included in the government's health insurance scheme. In 1993, the labour government under Prime Minister Paul Keating decided in its federal budget for that year to exclude optometry from Medicare (as it has become known by then) as a cost saving measure. This report was commissioned by the AOA to help it succesfully lobby for a reversal of that plan and it provides an interesting overview of the optometry profession at this time.
Location: Archive office. Pamphlet and ephemera filing cabinet. Drawer 4