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  • Ziggi Murphy

Bye Bye Benefits

Updated: May 1, 2019

A vast number of Australians have used or use natural therapies such as Pilates, Yoga, Naturopathy, Homeopathy, Reflexology, Tai chi and Aromatherapy. A total of 16 natural and alternative therapies will no longer be available to be claimed as of April 1st 2019.

Although the reason behind this decision was designed to push down private health premiums, you to have probably noticed, like me, that your private health insurance is actually going up. To say that doing this was in some way to decrease premiums is nonsensical. Some experts have pointed out that removing these services will only have a nominal effect. This decision, however, will have a huge impact on the service providers. There could be a possibility of some of them losing their jobs/profession. Do we need more unemployed?

The government carried out a review that was undertaken by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC),which was tasked with reviewing scientific literature examining the effectiveness and safety. In the report, the executive summary explained the investigation sought “to ensure that natural therapies are underpinned by a credible evidence base that demonstrates their clinical efficacy, cost-effectiveness and safety and quality.” This has been cited as part of the reason that these therapies were removed; however the report also added that this doesn’t mean these therapies don’t work. “Natural therapies emerged in an environment where there was not a premium on rigorous evidence base.”($File/Natural%20Therapies%20Overview%20Report%20Final%20with%20copyright%2011%20March.pdf

Was the government thinking about the people when it made this decision? Was it thinking about the people who depend on these therapies for jobs? Applying the same principles of medicine to these therapies is ridiculous, as these therapies work on very different principles.

Many people are attracted to these therapies because conventional therapy is not or is no longer working for them. For some people these therapies are very successful and can allow them to get off pain medicines.

Will people continue to use these therapies? Can they afford to?

Edit: 10/4/19 - Is this just an election ploy by the government?

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