My wife and I need glasses to see properly and to drive.
At our age we also need tests so Glaucoma doesn’t suddenly blind one of us.
Yesterday, for the first time, our Optometrist was forced to charge my wife one of the Abbott government’s copayments because he can no longer absorb rising costs with the government rebate frozen for years and other rebates cut.
We can afford to pay the copayment but the impact obviously falls on people with less money who will defer eye tests and hence: not change to better suited lenses and also will risk irreversible damage from Glaucoma, Macular Degeneration etc.
You and I will be at risk when drivers with unnecessarily impaired vision cause car crashes.
Potentially they will also run down school children walking home and its very unlikely governments will ever give us honest feedback: $x rebate saved, y school children hospitalised etc.
At the end of the day you and I pay for state government hospitals treating the many impacts of this freeze whether its people with irreversible eye damage, or the consequences of people with impaired eye sight.
We also pay the increased welfare bill for debilitating loss of sight and pay for other impacts which are wide ranging.
Its not your Optometrists fault, if you have a good Optometrist I suggest you pop in next time you walk by and tell them that you understand what they trying to deal with.
Christmas is close, it would be a nice thing to do.