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Media Release by The Hon Larry Anthony MP

Self-funded retirees take advantage of concession cards

More than 163,000 self-funded retirees of age pension age have taken advantage of the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card since the Federal Government expanded the scheme in January this year, the Minister for Community Services, Larry Anthony announced today.”The changes introduced by the Government have been well received by Australia’s self-funded retirees, with more people now eligible for concessions under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme,” Mr Anthony said.

“Since the introduction of a simpler and more generous income test for the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card, more than 163,000 self-funded retirees have become card holders.

“This has given them access to cheaper medicines under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.”

In January this year, the Government almost doubled the income limits for the card from $21,460 to $40,000 for a single person, and from $ 35,859 to $67,000 for a couple.

“I am pleased to see so many older Australians take advantage of this important benefit,” Mr Anthony said.

“The Commonwealth Seniors Health Card is recognition of the important contribution made to the Australian community by people who saved for their own retirement.”

Mr Anthony said the Government also understands the additional health care needs of people of age pension age.

“If self-funded retirees of age-pension age think they may be eligible for the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card they should contact Centrelink,” he said.

Self-funded retirees of age-pension age can get a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card application by calling Centrelink on 13 2300 or by calling into their nearest Centrelink Customer Service Centre.

Claim forms are also available from Members’ of Parliament electorate offices, accountants, financial planners and community organisations.