Victims of domestic and family violence will have easier access to public hospitals for treatment, as part of the NSW Government’s COVID-19 response.
The NSW hospital fees policy has been changed so that Medicare ineligible victims of domestic and family violence (DFV) will no longer be required to report the crime to police to access public hospitals at no cost.
The change by the NSW Government follows an Australian Institute of Criminology report that found DFV had risen during the pandemic.
The report also found a large proportion of victims were not reporting to police.
Health Minister, Brad Hazzard, said it is vital that people facing violence at home feel safe to seek support and care in our public hospitals, without fear of reprisal from perpetrators.
“A tragic, often hidden cost of the COVID-19 pandemic is the rise in violence on the home front and fewer opportunities to reach out for support,” Hazzard said.
“The NSW Government is helping to clear the way for victims of domestic and family violence to receive essential medical treatment and care in our hospitals, whenever they need it,” he added.