3.96 Sinclair Wornell and Associates (SWA) argued that average physician fees would increase, in line with an increase in MBS fees, if there was no agreement between the health insurers and physicians, so that most patients would have similar out-of-pocket expenses. Premiums would increase even without benefits for patients. [141] Medibank Private also stated that open non-life insurance would allow funds to offer products covering all costs, but would be a „fairly expensive product.“ [142] 3.25 The Committee wishes to avoid the worst features of the situation in the United States and strongly believes that this should be avoided. The Committee opposes any health care system that undermines the quality of patient care. However, it accepts that there is a common interest between doctors, hospitals and health insurers to ensure that patient care is of the highest clinical quality while remaining as inexpensive as possible. Providers, especially physicians, must recognize that whoever pays the medical bills (Medicare or funds) has the right to seek responsibility, efficiency, and value for money. 3.50 The Committee believes that the buyer-supplier body should be established in accordance with the Reform Act and that it should have access to agreements between buyers and suppliers in order to strengthen its role in monitoring contract legislation and to ensure a focus on consumers in the control of contracts. 3.2 The Reform Act defines two types of medical agreements. One form of agreement is with the funds and is called the Medical Buyer-Provider Agreement (MPPA). The second form of the agreement is with hospitals and is called the Practitioner Agreement (PA). 3.84 However, ACCC drew the Committee`s attention to the fact that all joint negotiations on prices and rates would not be contrary to section 45 of the Business Practices Act. Private hospitals, which are not competing geographically or on the product market, may negotiate jointly, provided that such conduct does not substantially leaten competition. Secondly, it is not a violation of s.45 if all hospitals belonging to a legal person, for example an order of the Catholic Church, negotiate with the sickness funds.

[127] Day hospitals usually greet you the same day and fire them. Night hospitals have overnight facilities after treatment. 3.82 APHA argued that independent hospitals and small hospital groups should negotiate contracts with health insurers in order to achieve a fairer basis for negotiations between hospitals and health funds. [123] Ahia, however, opposed this proposal on the grounds that it would lead to the creation of „cartels.“ [124] The association argued that existing legislation on business practices provides hospitals with sufficient flexibility in negotiations, without the need to grant specific exemptions. [125] 3.15 The Committee considers that the medical profession should cooperate in negotiating contracts, but in putting in place measures to address the profession`s concerns about its freedom of contract; their freedom to treat patients according to their clinical needs; the right of the profession to bargain collectively for contracts with private funds and hospitals, subject to the conditions of authorization provided for in the Commercial Practices Act; and the need for public oversight of contracts. The Committee therefore addresses these issues in the following sections of the chapter. 3.51 The Reform Act amends the National Health Act to provide for a specific form of contract between private hospitals and health insurers, known as the Hospital Buyer-Provider Agreement (HPPA). [73] It allows the Funds to enter into contracts with hospitals that set the amount of housing provided and the amounts to be delayed. .

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