Most patients in central Qld prefer to be bulk billed

THREE out of every four central Queenslanders opt to go to a bulk-billing doctor, and about 14% of central Queenslanders see a doctor more than 12 times a year.

That's among the higher ratios in the country.

As the nation's Health Minister Peter Dutton last week refused to confirm whether next month's Budget would include a $6 co-payment for GP visits, The Observer took a look at the latest health data for the region.

Going to the doctor can be an expensive experience for any family, but mother of three Clair Mariner is not overly concerned by the suggestion of a $6 co-payment.

"Sometimes you go and, especially with kids, you need to go back two, three, four times for the same sort of illness; that can add up," she said.

"The doctor bulk bills for the kids which I think is great, but I don't mind paying when we need to go."

Mrs Mariner said she understood why the government might need to introduce a fee, but was concerned about those who might not be able to afford it.

"It's hard because you don't want people not going to the doctor when they really need to, elderly people and that sort of thing," she said.

"Maybe it should be means tested."

Could you afford to go to the doctor without bulk billing?

This poll ended on 28 May 2014.

Current Results

Yes. And $6 isn't that much to pay

37%

Yes, but it would leave a noticeable hole in my wallet

5%

I would find it very difficult

18%

I'd have to think twice before making an appointment

37%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.



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