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Independent Member for Clark, Andrew Wilkie, said an ABC report of generations in Hobart’s northern suburbs having all their teeth removed illustrates why basic dental care needed to be rolled into Medicare.

“That some children think it’s the norm to have dentures is distressing,” Mr Wilkie said. “Poor oral health leads to all sorts of other health problems and sets these kids up for a lifetime of pain.

“Constituents regularly raise dental care concerns and it’s clear that some people are waiting far too long to access the public dental care system, and many people are going without. This is obviously not only bad for their dental health, but associated with other serious health conditions like heart disease.

“As a rich country we can afford to fund dental care properly and I have long advocated for basic dental care to be rolled into Medicare.

“If we spend a little on preventative dental health now, we will save big bucks down the line and reduce the state’s most common reason for preventative hospital admissions.”