Men’s health specialists have called for more government help to fund and run the men’s clinics.
Key points:Men’s health experts are urging more government money to be invested in the clinicsMen’s Health Australia (MHA) chief executive Dr Peter Hales said the crisis was now affecting the entire health systemThis week, the federal government announced $4.3 billion in funding to build four new men’s services in the ACT.
The government said the investment would help provide safe, affordable and comprehensive care to men, who account for 40 per cent of Australia’s male population.
However, the crisis is now affecting all levels of government, with some saying they can’t afford the new services and others questioning the need for more money.
The crisis has been exacerbated by the death of a man in Melbourne, who died after he was treated at a men’s clinic for a rare infection.
Men’s Minister for Women and Family Services Anne Tolley said she was pleased the funding had been secured and welcomed the focus on funding clinics.
“We need to get that investment back in there, and there’s going to be more money to go into the clinics,” Ms Tolley told 7.30.
“The funding is a big thing, but we also have to look at the funding for the providers, because they’re the ones that are going to run the clinics, they’re going to operate the programs and they’re also going to have the people who are going in there and treating those men.”
If you want to invest in men’s care, then you’re going in with the money you have, not the money that’s going around the community.
“The crisis is expected to impact on health services in other states and territories, including New South Wales and Victoria.
The Australian Medical Association (AMA) has also expressed concern about the crisis.
In a submission to the Australian Government’s National Men’s Health Strategy, AMA chief executive, Dr Alan Brown, said the state had a “long-standing and costly” lack of health care providers in the community.”
While there are a few regional centres providing quality primary care in the state, we are currently missing specialist and community-based male health clinics in every other state and territory,” Dr Brown said.”
It is a significant and serious shortfall that needs to be addressed.
“At the same time, the Government has a responsibility to ensure that every man is given the highest quality of care and that the community receives the services that they need.”
Mr Brown also urged the Government to look to other countries to improve men’s access to health care.
“I would also urge the Government not to ignore the plight of vulnerable men and women in Australia, especially in regional areas,” Dr Hales told 7:30.
“I’m concerned that we have a long-standing lack of specialist male health services.”
When the crisis becomes acute in any of our regions, the only people who can really get in the doors are the men themselves.
“You’re going from one crisis to another crisis, but the community is the one that is going to suffer.”
There is no silver bullet to this, but this is a crisis that we’re not going to sit back and do nothing.
“Mr Hales suggested that the Government should consider expanding the roles of community and medical professionals.”
That’s what we’re doing right now.””
If there is a need for specialist health services and care in a community, then it should be done by local and regional community and health professionals, not government.”
That’s what we’re doing right now.
“So the community will bear the cost of it.”
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