It is imperative that we support our hardworking healthcare providers and protect their ability to provide essential services to their communities. One Nation strongly advocates for an exemption for general practices (GPs) in Queensland who are facing a new patient tax imposed by the Palaszczuk’s Labor government.
The Labor government’s new interpretation of payroll tax laws has resulted in a 4.75% increase in total billings for doctors who work as contractors. This tax is not only burdensome, but it is also unjust as the cost will be passed onto patients with already stretched budgets. Healthcare services, as a basic human need, should be exempt from taxes, especially when public hospitals are exempt from payroll tax.
The RACGP conducted a survey, which showed that 87% of practices would have to pass on the tax to patients, while only 3% of practices could absorb it. This tax would lead to the end of bulk billing and result in increased out of pocket costs for patients by as much as 15%. It would have a negative impact on the most vulnerable members of our community who have the lowest income and are at most risk of adverse health outcomes.
The state's already strained hospital system won’t be able to cope with this new influx of patients who have no recourse but to turn up at their local accident and emergency. This tax would break general practices, increase bed block, and make it impossible for GP practices to support their patients.
Labor’s new patient tax is unjust and detrimental to the wellbeing of our communities. We call for a tax exemption for GP practices and for the government to fulfill their 26 pre-election promises of no new or increased taxes. Let's work together to ensure that patients have access to affordable and quality healthcare services.
Queensland Treasurer Cameron Dick has claimed he has ‘averted disaster’ by agreeing to delay the tax until after the next Queensland Election (Courier-Mail 3/2/2023). The tax will still go ahead, Mr Dick is just kicking the can down the road.
One Nation strongly opposes payroll tax, especially a tax on the sick, vulnerable and aging, such as this.