Australian Health Minister, Greg Hunt, set the bar stating: “This is the day Australia says we hear, we get it and it will never be the same again.” And “As a parent, I know we need to make this change.”
Families all over Australia facing eating disorders stand to benefit from the surprise announcements last week in Sydney:
- $111 million reform of Medicare, creating of a specific item number for eating disorders
- Increase for rebated psychological sessions from 10 to up to 40 in any calendar year
- Increase for rebated dietetic sessions up to 20 in any one year
Other forward-thinking initiatives and announcements were announced as well, and press coverage all over the world have followed, not to mention the fast spread of both congratulations and a bit of admiring envy among the global F.E.A.S.T. parent community.
Eating disorder treatment differs greatly between countries, healthcare systems, and funding agencies, but we also learn from and are energized by progress outside our local concerns. These steps forward by the government and agencies of Australia represent hard work by advocates and can serve as inspiration and an example to all of us advocates and healthcare policy-makers around the world.
Congratulations to our Australian friends and families and a special thank you to parent advocates who played a role. Our own Belinda Caldwell, who is the Deputy Chair of EDFA as well as serving on F.E.A.S.T.’s Board of Directors and most recently as our Executive Director, was in Sydney alongside, representing both EDFA and F.E.A.S.T. at this important moment.
Laura Collins Lyster-Mensh, Executive Director