$49 million to give women better help for devastating illness

$49 million to give women better help for devastating illness

A $49.1 million government investment will give women suffering complex gynaecological conditions including endometriosis better access to specialist doctors.

Sufferers will have access to longer specialist consultations of 45 minutes or more, which will be covered under Medicare.

From July 1 next year, two new items will be added to the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) enabling extended consultation times and increased rebates for specialist gynaecological care.

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The aim is to ensure women receive timely and appropriate assessments and are no longer left waiting for critical diagnoses and treatments.

The government said the initiative would provide about 430,000 more services to help women around the country.

Endometriosis is estimated to affect at least one in nine Australian women.

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It has an average of seven years before diagnosis.

“Women are suffering unnecessarily. They’re having their experiences dismissed, being called hysterical and accused of drug shopping,” Health Minister Mark Butler said.

“Women’s pain is real and it’s time we stop telling women to just suck it up.”

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