Disability Care now a reality but how can we protect its future?
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Legend has it that before the introduction of Medibank (now Medicare) in 1974, then-prime minister Gough Whitlam convinced the premiers at a Commonwealth-states meeting to introduce a national disability insurance scheme similar to New Zealand’s comprehensive insurance scheme, which was established in 1972. But during a meeting break, his treasurer Bill Hayden apparently persuaded Gough Whitlam to delay this reform as he feared it might undermine his ambitions for the successful introduction of Medibank, which was limited to universal health cover. Now, almost 40 years later, Treasurer Wayne Swan’s sixth budget is finally providing a ten-year funding pathway for the DisabilityCare Australia scheme. It is the first time in Australian history that disability has been at the centre of a federal budget.
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Care for Disabled