7 Dec 2009

Talks on federal takeover of health system in Australia

12:55 pm on 7 December 2009

Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and state premiers are meeting in Brisbane to work through options for national health reform - including a possible federal takeover of public hospitals.

Mr Rudd has delayed a decision on a federal takeover until next year but he will give a progress report on public reaction to overhauling the health system.

The ABC reports a health reform body has recommended full federal responsibility for primary health care including GPs, basic dental care and aged care.

It has also recommended the Commonwealth pay for public hospital outpatient services and emergency department admissions.

Health Minister Nicola Roxon says she and the Prime Minister "have been told time and time again is that there is a frustration that the health system has become too heavily bureaucratised."

She wants to hear what the states have to say about health reform.