But Premier Colin Barnett said an ED tax would only be considered if there was a large shift of people going to the ED instead of their GP in response to the Federal Government’s $7 tax to visit a GP.
Mr Barnett said the State Government’s concern was that people would go to the emergency department if they had to pay to see their GP.
‘That would create congestion and it would be high cost to the public health system,’ he said.
The Labor petition says the taxes will deter people from seeking the medical treatment they need.
‘The new emergency department tax would impact local residents needing emergency treatment at Peel Health Campus,’ Mr Cook said.
‘It could result in parents of sick children or the elderly deciding not to seek medical care and that could have serious consequences.’
Residents in Mandurah and surrounding suburbs can sign the online petition at www.markmcgowan.-com.au/hospitaltax.
Mr Cook said the Liberal Party was undermining Australia’s internationally regarded health care system.
Mr Barnett said he agreed with a reluctance to put fees on EDs. ‘I don’t think we will see a big shift, but that’s just something we have got to monitor and see what happens,’ he said.
‘But some minimum level of charging, I don’t think is such a bad thing because we do get some over usage of services and over servicing.’