Australian government drops universal healthcare changes

December 9, 2014 6:14 AM

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Australian government drops universal healthcare changes

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Prime Minister Tony Abbott on Tuesday abandoned a plan to radically reshape Australia's universal healthcare system by charging patients a fee to see their doctor, a major back flip for his struggling conservative government.

The A$7 ($6) "co-payment" fee, which had been included in an unpopular May budget, was heavily criticized by the opposition and many in the healthcare sphere as a sign that Australia was moving toward a U.S. healthcare model.

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