How to stem a health care haemorrhage

Swelling health care costs are at the centre of Australia's looming budget blowout. Improving productivity gains and pushing towards evidence-based procedures may help to relieve pressure on the budget.

Health care expenditure should become an immediate priority for the Abbott government. Recent reports suggest that health care spending will be the central cause of a growing budgetary blackhole.

The Productivity Commission report on An Ageing Australia received a lot of attention over the past few days and rightfully so. I analysed some of the issues on Friday, focusing mainly on the age pension and the broader budgetary effects of an ageing population (Ageing pension policies will cripple Australia’s growth, November 22). But there are a number of other issues and angles worth discussion – and health care expenditure is one of the most important.

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