IN June 1984, physicians in New South Wales (NSW), Australia, voted overwhelmingly to resign from public hospitals, and by July 2, 1559 resignations had been received by hospital administrators. These resignations were in defiance of government legislation banning doctors who resigned from rejoining the public-hospital system for seven years. The factors precipitating this confrontation between the medical profession and the government had their origin in the enabling legislation for Medicare, the government-financed system of public health care introduced in Australia on February 1, 1984. Background The Australian health care system is organized along both public and private lines. Although most.
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