Australia plans to crack down on welfare and medical fraud cheats, according to a news report in the West Australian. To do so, the Australian Government along with the Human Services Agency will introduce a plan that will assign each of its citizens with a virtual ID card.
The government plans to centralize information from various human services agencies including Medicare, Centrelink, the Child Support Agency, Australian Hearing and CRS Australia, who coordinate rehabilitation services for people with disabilities, injuries or other health problems.
Among many objectives the plan hopes to eliminate fraudsters of the government health system. To eliminate cheats, the new identity database will be used for detecting individuals who are cheating the welfare system or attempting to avoid child support payments. It will also prevent “doctor shoppers” who move between bulk-billing general practitioners to illegally obtain pain-killers and other addictive drugs.
The plan also hopes to speed up the processes involved with government services, as currently, cross-checking information on the millions of Australians is difficult and leads to months of waiting before entitlements are paid, or unwarranted payments are canceled.
Human Services Minister Chris Bowen also states that this federal plan for virtual national identity cards will also save Australians from paperwork typically involved in applying for employment benefits, doctor visits or collecting child support payments.
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