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Dear Members,
It is with great disappointment, but not discouragement, that we write to inform you that our 2017 efforts to advocate for Medicare Rebates for IBCLCs® has been rejected. I am informed by some inaugural and historical members of the Professional and Political Advocacy Committee (PPAC) that the 2017 application progressed further than any previous application had progressed. The response from the assessors was detailed and by no means final in our view. Within the summarising opening statement, is the following statement: “In line with the Department’s responsibilities under the PGPA Act, Application 1517 has been assessed and a number of policy issues have been identified that will prevent it from progressing through the MSAC process at this time.”
The report was generous with its detail, and in the view of the PPAC providing the clarity, we need to pursue another submission in the near future. On behalf of the LCANZ Board and the PPAC, I would like to urge all IBCLCs® to pursue a mobilised, unified and organised approach to advocate for Medicare Rebates for IBCLCs®. Being a financial member of LCANZ, the professional peak body for IBCLCs® in Australia and New Zealand, will be important to our political and professional advocacy. There is strength in numbers and in the collective efforts of our expertise. It is important to our profession to work together as one movement, and I implore all IBCLCs® to be cognisant of this.
I am so excited by the ‘verbal’ energy for political lobbying as it is presented on the LCANZ facebook page, and want to personally urge those involved, and everyone, to channel that energy into activism, by joining a LCANZ Committee or even consider being a part of the Board in the near future. We have a fascinating position known as the Director at Large, which is like an L-plate position, that can quietly prepare you for a larger portfolio when you feel ready. Our Board positions, like all board positions, have limited terms. Each year we are usually looking to recruit a new member. So, give it some thought!
Heather Gale
Director of Political and Professional Advocacy

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