News and Opinion for Democrats Against Bush -- Part II
Australians Refuse to Give Up Affordable Medicines
PT. II - HOME PAGE
PT. II - CONTENTS
BUSH and the MEDIA
CIVIL RIGHTS
-- Gay Rights
THE ECONOMY
-- The Real Deficit
---- Deficit Lies
-- International Debt
---- Children Will Pay
-- Tax Cut Con Game
---- Tax-Cut Lies
------ to Small Business
---- Phony Benefits
---- Hurting States
---- Why Accepted?
---- Cuts Will Backfire
-- Low-Tax Mania
-- Move toward Flat Tax
-- Corp. Tax Dodgers
-- Corporate Welfare
---- Halliburton
-- The SUV Boondoggle
-- Unemploym't Worse
------ Comp. Denied
---- Jobs Not Created
-- Widespread Poverty
-- False Recovery
-- Stock Market
EDUCATION
-- Texas Sch. Scandals
-- Broken Promises
-- Abandoned Youth
-- College Aid Cut
-- Aid to Rich Colleges
-- Textbooks Censored
-- Acad. Freedom Denied
ELECTRONIC VOTING -- --- A Crucial Issue
ENERGY
-- Monstrous Bill
---- Allows Blackouts
---- Bi-Part. Oppos'n
-- New Energy Bill
ENVIRONMENT
-- Bush's "Eco-Speak"
---- How to Tell Lies
-- Crimes v. Nature
---- Air Pollution
---- Global Warming
---- Ozone Depletion
---- Chemical Hazards
---- Loss of Wildlife
-- States Combat Bush
---- Power Plant Suits
-- Pension Funds, Too
LABOR ISSUES
-- Worker Safety
-- Real Jobless Stats
-- Overtime in Danger
--"Productivity"
PUBLIC HEALTH
-- Poor Ranking
-- Privatized Socialism
-- Health Insurance
---- The Uninsured
------ Middle Class
-- Cost of Drugs
-- Medicare
---- A Cynical Bill
---- Favoring HMOs
---- $$ to Drug Co.s
---- Bait and Switch
---- AARP Sells Out
---- Bullying to Win
---- Australian Critique
---- Some Good News
-- Chill on Research
TRANSPORTATION
-- Amtrak
-- Mars vs. Amtrak
WAR OF IDEAS
-- Use of Language
WAR on TERROR
--'Enemy Combatants'
-- Ultra-Secret Trials
-- Homeland Insecurity
---- Funds Miss Needs
WAR on CIVIL RIGHTS
-- FBI Prying Grows
---- Targeting Protests
------ & Anti-Bush Talk
-- Computer Privacy
-- Patriot Act
---- Excesses
------ Cure - SAFE Act
---- Dangers
---- Author's Fear
---- Librarians' Warning
--"Patriot Act II"
---- Death for Protest?
---- Sneak Enactments
-- CAPPS II
---- GAO Criticisms
---- EFF Concerns
-- Guantanamo
---- Conditions
---- Legal Status
---- UK Judge's Blast
-- Torture Condoned
---- Canadian's Ordeal
-- Yousef Yee
WAR on SCIENCE
-- Scientists Accuse
---- Admin. Can't Deny
WAR on WOMEN
-- Abortion Truths
-- Notorious Photo
WAR on WORKING FAMILIES

' The Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme uses bulk purchases and economies of scale to keep a ceiling on prescription drug costs. ... 
"If you're serious about cost containment, you don't block Medicare from using its enormous purchasing power to bring drug prices down," said Robert Greenstein, of the Centre on Budget and Policy Priorities. '  -- The Age (Melbourne)

 

Servihoo (Sydney, Australia)

Australian minister raises hopes for US free trade deal by Christmas
[27 Nov 2003]

The complete article is currently (4/5/04) available on the Servihoo website at--  http://servihoo.com/channels/kinews/v3news_details.php?id=24724&CategoryID=47

Excerpt--

 

SYDNEY (AFP)
Australian Trade Minister Mark Vaile said a free trade deal with the United States was still possible before a year-end deadline despite serious hurdles remaining.

... Opening up American markets to Australian agricultural produce is Canberra's key objective in the talks but also the biggest stumbling block for negotiators.

Other obstacles include freeing up Australia's strict media content rules and its Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).

Vaile said on Thursday that the programme, which provides approved drugs at subsidised prices to consumers, was not up for negotiation despite strong pressures from the US drug industry for changes to the system.

"The criteria and the measures in place to deliver affordable medicines to all Australians through the PBS system is not trade distorting," Vaile said.

"We have told them we are not prepared to adjust our policy ... that it works extremely well, that we are a totally different economy and a totally different market place to the US." ...

Copyright : Telecom Plus Ltd

http://servihoo.com/channels/kinews/v3news_details.php?id=24724&CategoryID=47

The Age (Melbourne, Australia)
 
Counting the cost of keeping America well
By Gerard Wright
November 30, 2003

America is still the land of remarkable dichotomies, no more so than in the realm of the health of its citizens.

It boasts the world's best and most advanced medical care, for those who can afford it. But there are 41 million Americans who are not even insured to receive it at its most basic level. ...

Last week, after debate in the Republican Party-controlled Congress and Senate in Washington, America now has a new Medicare Bill, a lesson, if not a model, for an Australian Government attempting a makeover of its own health insurance scheme. ...

The Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme uses bulk purchases and economies of scale to keep a ceiling on prescription drug costs. Under the new Medicare system, these purchases would be negotiated by private drug-benefit managers, rather than a single Medicare representative.

This, according to Democrats, means there is no effective brake on drug prices, the main reason for America's rocketing health care costs. ...

"If you're serious about cost containment, you don't block Medicare from using its enormous purchasing power to bring drug prices down," said Robert Greenstein, of the Centre on Budget and Policy Priorities. ...

The introduction of the new Medicare will be seen as historic, although possibly not for the reasons its sponsors envisaged. While the program is projected to cost $US400 billion over the first 10 years of its life, it is estimated costs will increase by an average $US2.5 billion a year to $US65.2 billion in 2013.

This story was found at: http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2003/11/29/1070081590406.html

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