Health 2018-19 Budget at a Glance – Key Initiatives

This section of the website gives access to the Budget at a Glance information for the Department of Health for the financial year 2018-2019

Page last updated: 08 May 2018

Health 2018-19 Budget at a Glance – Key Initiatives (PDF 436 KB)

2018–19 Budget
Long Term National Health Plan
$99.1b in 2018 –19 for health, aged care and sport

Additional investment in this Budget:

  • $12.4b health, aged care and sport
  • $4.8b in Medicare
  • $2.4b for new medicines (includes $1b provision)
  • $30.2b for new hospitals agreement with states
  • $5.0b for aged care
  • $1.3b for health industry growth plan
  • $338.1m for mental health
  • $230m for sport and physical activity

Guaranteeing Medicare and Access to Medicines

Guaranteeing Medicare (Additional $4.8b)

  • $24.0b 2017–18 to $28.8b 2021– 22
  • Unfreezing indexation $1.5b from 2017–18
  • MSAC and MBS Review updates: dialysis, 3D mammography,
    MRI prostate scans, and cystic fibrosis testing

Access to life-saving and life-improving medicines ($2.4b)

  • $1.4b for new listings including Ribociclib for certain types of breast cancer ($703.6m); Nusinersen for SMA ($241.3m); PrEP to prevent HIV transmission ($180m)
  • $1b provision for future listings from improved payment administration
  • Strengthening the Life Saving Drugs Program

Improving Indigenous health ($3.9b over four years; $10b over a decade)

  • Better health outcomes from more integrated, transparent and responsive funding model
  • Ear health, additional hearing assessments for preschool children ($30m)
    Eye health program ($34.3m)
    Crusted scabies elimination ($4.8m)
    GP incentives to employ Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
  • workers/practitioners ($33.4m)
  • Better access to aged care Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people ($105m)

Ageing and Aged Care

Additional $5.0b over five years

Better Access to Care

  • 20,000 additional high level home care packages since last Budget,
  • 13,500 new aged care places and 775 short term restorative places, plus $60m capital for residential aged care facilities
  • Upgrade My Aged Care and trial System Navigators to improve access
  • Streamlined consumer assessments and simpler forms
  • $40m for urgent maintenance and infrastructure for regional providers

Better Quality of Care

  • New Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission with strengthened regulation
    • Tough cop on the beat
  • Enhanced coordination and an improved ability to identify and respond to failures in quality
  • $50m to support residential care providers transition to new quality standards
  • Greater transparency in quality of aged care through introducing performance rating
  • Palliative care ($32.8m) and better care for people living with dementia ($5.3m)

Better Ageing

  • Mental health support ($102.5m), residential and the community
  • Promoting independent living through trialling innovative approaches
  • 45 year and 65 year checks to stay healthy, active and independent

Prioritising Mental Health, Preventive Health and Sport

Supporting better mental health for all Australians $338.1m

  • Suicide prevention: $33.8m – Lifeline, $37.6m – beyondblue, $1.2m – SANE
  • Older Australians $82.5m (residential care) and $20m (mental health nurses supporting older Australians in the community at risk from isolation)
  • $125m over 10 years Million Minds Mission from MRFF
  • $12.4m – Strengthening the National Mental Health Commission
  • $20.4m – Mental health care through RFDS

Sport and Physical Activity – Building an active Australia $230m

  • $154.3m – participation, performance, prevention through physical activity, and integrity, including community infrastructure to upgrade sporting facilities
  • $4m  – FIFA Women’s World Cup
  • $22.9m  – Supporting an increase in physical activity for older Australians
  • $48.5m – Water and Snow Safety Program
  • Giving kids the best start in life – Infant and maternal $77.9m
  • $39.5m – whooping cough immunisation for pregnant women
  • $17.5m – Research – Maternal health and first 2,000 days
  • Healthy pregnancies
  • National digital baby book to keep track of infant health
  • Additional insulin pumps for children with type 1 diabetes
  • Reducing childhood injuries through a national education program
  • Increasing knowledge and awareness of endometriosis and SMA

Life Saving and Job Creating Medical Research

$6b investment ($2b MRFF $3.5b NHMRC $0.5b BTF)

Earlier access to medicines, treatments and devices

  • $1.3b National Health and Medical Industry Growth Plan
    • 28,000 new jobs and 200 new companies

Investment of:

  • $500m for a 10 year Genomics Health Futures Mission
    • transform 200,000 lives
    • Mackenzie’s Mission pre-pregnancy screening for SMA, fragile X, cystic fibrosis – 10,000 families
  • $240m committed to Frontier Health and Medical Research program
  • $248m for rare cancers and rare diseases clinical trials
  • $32m for industry research collaborations
  • $125m over nine years from 2019  –  20 to establish Targeted Translation Research Accelerator for chronic disease, focus on cardiovascular and diabetes
  • $62.3m for biomedical and medical technology programs

Further MRFF support

  • $125m for Million Minds Mental Health Mission to assist additional one million people with diagnosis and treatment
  • $150m for translation of research into better patient outcomes

Supporting our Hospitals

2020 – 2025 National Health Agreement funding to public hospitals

  • $30.2b increase to record funding of $130.2b from 2020 – 2025
  • More than double from $13.3b in 2012 – 13 to $28.7b in 2024– 25
  • $100m innovation fund

Stronger Rural Health Strategy

$550m investment to improve the health of people living in rural, regional and remote Australia – 3,000 extra GPs and 3,000 extra nurses

Teaching – train in the regions, stay in the regions

  • $95.4m  –  Murray –Darling Medical Schools Network end-to-end rural training
    • no new net Commonwealth supported places
  • Expanding Rural Health Multidisciplinary Training Program
    • Curtin University and La Trobe University


  • More Doctors for Rural Australia Program
    • Rural Medicare Provider Number
    • Incentives for non-VR GPs to become Fellows
  • National Rural Generalist Pathway developed with the National Rural Health Commissioner
    • 100 additional vocational training places

Recruitment and retention

  • Enhanced and simpler bonded programs
  • Workforce Incentive Program to encourage health professionals to work in rural and remote areas
  • Rural bulk billing incentives targeted as intended
  • Strengthening the role of the nursing workforce in primary care

RFDS – improved dental, mental health and ambulance services

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