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Wednesday, 17 August 2011
Page: 8312

Dr SOUTHCOTT (Boothby) (11:46): The more I read these amendments, the more questions they pose. In terms of amendment (7) I do have some questions about the reports which will be prepared by the performance authority. The amendments go into quite a lot of detail about what must be done if the report indicates poor performance, the consultation that must be done with the state and territory health ministers and that they must be given an opportunity to respond.

In reading the legislation and reading the amendments it is not clear what happens to the reports after they have been prepared. My question to the minister is: is there any requirement for these reports to be made public within a certain period of time? This is especially important in the area of quality and safety—there have been disasters in Australia, for example in the Bundaberg Hospital, and we do not want to see a repeat of what happened at Bundaberg Hospital. We need to know, if reports show poor performance in the local hospital network or in a public hospital, that these reports will ultimately be made public. Amendment (7) talks a lot about the consultation and the periods of consultation that are required but my question here is: what is the requirement on making these reports public? Is there a specific time line here? We would like to know when we will be able to see them and when these reports will be made public. I go back to my previous questions that still have not been answered on the area of primary healthcare organisations.

Mr Perrett interjecting

Dr SOUTHCOTT: They have not been answered, dopey.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Ms AE Burke ): The member will withdraw and the member will not interject. This is not helping the situation.

Dr SOUTHCOTT: I withdraw. I thank the minister for her answers to my earlier questions, but I still have an unanswered question about what constitutes poor performance by a primary healthcare organisation. Would this be in the area of the delivery of after-hours services? Would it be if they are not sufficiently making networks with allied health practitioners or practice nurses—what would really constitute that? I also am particularly interested in quality and safety. I would like to know what quality and safety information will be prepared and made available to the public in these reports that are being prepared by the performance authority.