Without these payments, pathology services may be forced to pass on costs to the patients who require the services.
Stop and think a minute about all the blood tests and other pathology tests you regularly have. If you have to pay for them upfront, what will that mean for you?
I know that one of the effects of lupus is that very many of us either can't work, or can't work full-time. That means money is pretty tight for a lot of us.
What would happen if we couldn't afford our tests? Well, some people might not be properly diagnosed to begin with, but also lupies wouldn't have the ongoing checks on our disease activity and how well our drugs are controlling our condition.
My fear is that more of us will die.
The change is set to come into effect on 1 July 2016, which means the double-dissolution election on 2 July will be too late to prevent its introduction no matter who wins.
Pathology Australia, an organisation representing pathology providers throughout the country, has started a campaign called "Don't Kill Bulk Bill", offering everyone an opportunity to join in a petition to let all of our politicians know our concerns.
If you are worried about how this change will affect you, or someone you care about, please sign the petition.
And if you encounter any politicians of any ilk campaigning for the election, whether for the House of Representatives or the Senate, make sure you tell them how much you rely on pathology, and how important it is to your ongoing survival and quality of life.
In Australia, we have an amazing healthcare system. If you're going to be sick, this is probably one of the best places to be. I'm certain I'm not the only chronically ill person who wants to keep it that way.
14th May 2016. This issue has been resolved and the petition has been closed. Read the update here.