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The Australian Traditional-Medicine Society (ATMS) has launched the How Dare They! campaign aimed at the Federal Parliament, as the Coalition Government moves to scrap the private health insurance rebate on natural therapies.

The move will make it more expensive for Australians with private health insurance to visit their local natural health practitioners.
Charles Wurf, Chief Executive Officer, ATMS, said Australians with private health insurance already pay a premium so that they can choose the best medical treatment for themselves and for their families.

“Natural therapies are vital to not only the economy but to everyday Australians, with 68.9% of Australians having used at least one form of natural therapy in the last 12 months[1] and 69.2 million visits to natural medicine practitioners[2].

“For many Australians private healthcare is about choice. Removing the private health insurance rebate on natural therapies seriously limits the choices available to Australians to manage their personal health and may affect the preventative steps they take to keep their families well/healthy,” said Mr Wurf.

With the natural medicines industry employing over 36,000 Australians[3], the potential economic effects are also of concern.
“With 28,000 Australian small businesses operating in the natural medicine industry, it’s not only consumers of natural medicine who will be impacted by this move,” concluded Mr Wurf.

ATMS ask that Minister Hunt reconsider this policy and reinstate choice back into the Australian private health insurance system.

The online campaign will run parallel to planned Federal Government consultation on this issue in July 2018, with the new private health insurance rules being finalised for commencement in April 2019.

More information on the collaborative How Dare They! campaign can be found here: www.howdarethey.com.au
For more on ATMS visit: www.atms.com.au


Interviews with:
  • Charles Wurf, CEO, ATMS, are available on request through the below contacts
For media enquiries please contact:
Jessica McLean, Account Manager, Zadro
P: 02 9212 7867 | jessica@zadroagency.com.au
Debbie Bradley, Group Account Director, Zadro
P: 02 9212 7867 | felicity@zadroagency.com.au

  1. Charles Wurf, CEO, ATMS

About the Australian Traditional-Medicine Society:

The Australian Traditional-Medicine Society (ATMS) is the leader of the natural medicine industry, promoting and representing professional practitioners of natural medicine, who are encouraged to pursue the highest ideals of professionalism in their natural medicine practice and education. As Australia’s largest national professional association for natural medicine practitioners, ATMS is a multi-disciplinary association representing over 10,000 accredited practitioners throughout Australia.

ATMS was founded in 1984 and is an incorporated not-for-profit company. In 2014 ATMS celebrated their 30th anniversary representing natural medicine practitioners in Australia. ATMS is governed by a Board of Directors, with specialised departments for Massage Therapy, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Homeopathy, Nutrition, Naturopathy and Western Herbal Medicine.
[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17718647 Xue et al. 2007 Complementary and Alternative
Medicine Use in Australia: A National Population-Based Survey
[2] Australian Department of Health and Ageing. Medicare Statistical data for the June Quarter 2005.
Available from: http://www.health.gov.au/, 2005
[3] IBIS World Report, March 2018