It was a week where both sides of politics trashed each other’s dental policies. But if you are sick with bad teeth, only one thing mattered. The current Chronic Disease Dental Scheme (CDDS), having treated a million Australians, faced the chop from the federal government.
Thanks to a disallowance motion in the parliament by Coalition Health Shadow Peter Dutton, it may be saved and debate is underway.
Coalition MPs lined up for their suffering constituents. Independent Bob Katter also strongly backs this effort to ensure chronic disease sufferers can get the dental treatment they need. Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor are considering their positions.
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Nearly half of all Australians don’t visit the dentist regularly. Cost and anxiety are the stumbling blocks, and no wonder.
I took my kids for a check-up last week. My 12-year-old, who has never had a moment’s dental drama, leapt smugly into the chair and had the smile wiped from her face when she was told she’d need her first filling.
The dentist anaesthetised her gum with a large needle and occupied her mouth with his mirror, an amalgam condenser and the hygienist’s suction implement. You’d think this would have impeded her capacity to talk, but no.
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