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Monday, 3 November 2003
Page: 21850


Mrs Irwin asked the Minister representing the Minister for Health and Ageing, upon notice, on 11 August 2003:

(1) Has the Minister recently received a report dealing with Australia's Hepatitis C strategy; if so, when.

(2) Does the report call for a major revitalisation of Australia's Hepatitis C strategy.

(3) What concerns does the report raise to lead to a call for a major revitalisation of the strategy.

(4) Does the report examine the success or failure of current strategies.

(5) Does the report express concern that the Government's “Tough on Drugs Policy” may lead to an increase in Hepatitis C cases.


Mr Abbott (Minister for Health and Ageing) —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) Yes. The former Minister for Health and Ageing, Senator the Hon. Kay Patterson, received a set of four reports of the 2002 Reviews of the National HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C Strategies and Strategic Research on 20 December 2002 (`the reports').

(2) No. The reports do not call for `a major revitalisation of Australia's Hepatitis C strategy'.

(3) The issues raised in the reports are complex. The former Minister for Health and Ageing, Senator the Hon. Kay Patterson, consulted with her ministerial colleagues on preparation of the Australian Government response to the reviews to ensure that the most effective outcomes are achieved.

(4) Yes.

(5) No.