Queen’s Birthday Honour for our Vice President
“The Doctors Reform Society is delighted to note that Dr Con Costa, our current Vice President and past President, has been awarded an Order of Australia Medal in recognition of his long standing support for Medicare and public health care advocacy,” said Dr Tim Woodruff, President, Doctors Reform Society.
“He has worked with and through our organisation and with other groups to pursue genuine universal health coverage for all Australians, particularly in the form of an affordable, extended Primary Health Care system. But he has also long recognised the importance of social factors in determining health outcomes and has worked tirelessly to bring these to prominence,” said Dr Woodruff. “We are delighted to see this award as recognition of the work of the Doctors Reform Society since its formation in 1973 to support the introduction of public health insurance, Medicare.”
“This was in the face of strident opposition from the Australian Medical Association. Since that time Dr Costa’s lifelong work has been an encouragement to all doctors, particularly bulk billing GPs to take an active interest in supporting a fairer and better system for our patients and all those involved in working in Australia’s public health sector.”
“Dr Costa showed that doctors need to be political, because health is political and Australia’s health care system is worth fighting for, despite many doctors thinking that politics is not something they should involve themselves in.”
“When poverty leads to ill health, doctors need to point this out and politicians should listen. When the health and social systems discriminates against the poor, the unemployed, the non English speakers, Indigenous Australians, those with mental illness or disability, women, and many other disadvantaged groups, it is our responsibility as doctors to identify and advocate the changes required. We are political.”
“We congratulate Dr Costa on his award.”