If you are Australian and you don't live under a rock, you will have heard that we have a new change of leadership. Julia Gillard was ousted in a very similar fashion to the way in which she took the job three years ago and in an ironic twist of fate the person that deposed her was the same person she deposed last time. If you are one of my readers from overseas I can tell you that yes, it is as farcical as it sounds.
And I for one say 'Good riddance Ms Gillard'. You have lied, cheated and done dodgy deals to stay in power (the same fashion in which you took it) and hopefully the country can now right itself. Most of your policies have been pure pandering to minorities and non essential institutions in order to keep your job and when anybody attacked you you simply branded them a sexist misogynist which in most cases wasn't true, simply a way to deflect attention. I for one have judged you as a politician and prime minister, not a woman.
But I digress. This is a blog is about medical issues not a mechanism for me to vent my political frustrations so let me marry the two together. For all her shortcomings Julia Gillard has one policy that I believe is the shining light of her term in office. A policy that is as forward thinking and progressive as when Thomas Price (former Premier of South Australia and also my great great grandfather) gave women the right to vote in state elections in 1906. I am of course referring to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
As a society we need to keep evolving and our social responsibility should forever be increasing. Years ago every developed society developed their own health care system to look after the sick. However, this was set up to nurse the sick and stop people from dying. This initiative goes one step further and is aimed squarely at giving the chronically sick and disabled an improved quality of life through providing living and mobility aids, case working, carers assistance etc...
I believe this policy will set a benchmark for other developed countries to follow. And don't confuse this with socialism, this is social responsibility and although it is expensive and paid for by the tax payer it is the right thing to do. Some of these disabled people will even become more functional and become tax payers themselves which would ease the financial burden. But this is not why we are doing this. For people to have self esteem they need to feel like they are productive and and contributing members of society. The NDIS will act as a vehicle for this.
For this reason Ms Gillard, as you pack your bags and vacate the Lodge I salute you. However, I also send a message out to Kevin Rudd and all future leaders of our country. This is just the beginning. The journey which has now been started has a long way to travel. Make sure you reach the destination. If you need a hand I'll be happy to help:)