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Jennifer Doggett new Chair of Australian Health Care Reform Alliance

The Australian Health Care Reform Alliance (AHCRA) today announced the appointment of its new Chair, Jennifer Doggett, replacing Tony McBride who has stood down after six years at the helm.

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#keepdentalcentral Social Media Campaign

To highlight the importance of dental services and the need for the Commonwealth Government to take a leadership role in this area, AHCRA is running a social media campaign using the hashtag #keepdentalcentral.

Please support this campaign through sharing and re-tweeting and joining the shared advocacy strategies to improve access to dental care in our community.

For more information about the current state of dental health policy in Australia, check the website of the National Oral Health Alliance (and if not already a member consider joining this important group).

The following article, outlining AHCRA’s rationale for this campaign was recently posted at the health blog

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Thanks Tony McBride

Tony McBride has just stepped down as Chair of AHCRA after six outstanding years. We sincerely thank him for his warmth and generosity towards all of AHCRA’s members and friends and for his sterling service to furthering AHCRA’s goals and activities. Tony’s leadership enabled us to keep on with our summits, policy development and media and social activism including regarding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’s health. His commitment to finding practical ways of proceeding when others felt we were bogged down and going nowhere was a great relief and inspiration to many of us

Tony helped us all feel that we were contributing our small bit to the bigger cause of genuine health reform. His dedication to working with others outside our organisation, often despite significant differences of view, has kept us universally recognised, relevant and on track. Whilst we are not where we would like to be, without his leadership AHCRA may have faded into insignificance.. Instead, AHCRA and its Executive remain robust and committed to continuing the journey toward genuine health reform and strongly representing the aspirations of our membership.

Tony calmly and skilfully handled a diverse Executive and brought out the best in us. It is with much regret that the AHCRA Executive has seen and heard the last of him gently presiding at our many meetings and summits over the years.

We wish Tony well in his ongoing pursuits at health reform and beyond, and keenly hope he will remain engaged with AHCRA and maintain his friendship with us all.

Thank you Tony.



The Australian Health Care Reform Alliance (AHCRA) is a coalition of peak health groups working towards a better health system for Australia’s future.

Australia’s health system has developed over several generations and no longer meets the needs of our urban and rural communities. Many Australians are missing out on the care they need or not receiving the best possible care for their condition. There is a growing gap in health and the provision of care which is undermining the fairness of our society.
Australia needs to make major changes to its healthcare system to make it better and fairer for all. With an ageing population and increasing demand for appropriate care, we need to ensure that every dollar we spend on health care delivers maximum value. We also need to make sure that our health system reflects the values of our community.

AHCRA is working to find solutions to optimise our health system, and to overcome identified deficiencies including:

  • poor access to care for many Australians especially rural and remote populations
  • consumer frustration and difficulties in navigating an overly complex system
  • the health gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australiansincreasing out-of-pocket costs for services
  • poor distribution and some shortages in doctors, nurses and other health professionals
  • unfulfilled demands for better mental and dental care
  • an insufficient focus on prevention and primary care
  • inefficiencies caused by the current State/ Commonwealth funding structure.

The Federal Government continues to modify health care policies that threaten universal health care including making significant changes to the ways in which health care is funded and delivered. While many of these changes recognise existing problems, they are being made in the absence of a coherent national policy commitment. AHCRA believes significant gaps and system flaws remain that have not been adequately addressed.   AHCRA continues to advocate for these issues to be confronted and to influence the effective implementation of equitable measures that deliver a healthy nation.

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