Labour to scrap private health insurance rebates for natural therapies

Natural therapies are likely to actually save the government more money than what they will save. Many of our patients are light users of the public health care system because of the care we provide.

This is just so wrong. Speak up if you think this is wrong!



Shadow treasurer Chris Bowen announced on Friday that from July 1, 2017, taxpayer-funded private health insurance rebates would no longer be available for natural therapies.

The measure would save $180 million over four years, and $704 million over the decade.

Mr Bowen was quick to insist there was nothing wrong with seeking natural therapies like aromatherapy, herbalism or iridology.

“I myself use them from time to time — my personal favourite is the Bowen treatment, I can recommend it to you,” he said.

“But in times of difficult budgetary situations, it is not appropriate for taxpayers to have to fund and subsidise private health insurance cover for these treatments.”

Mr Bowen also announced Labor would continue the threshold freeze for private health insurance rebates for another decade to 2026, saving $2.3 billion.