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Tuesday, 3 May 1994
Page: 74


Senator LEES (Deputy Leader of the Australian Democrats) (6.29 p.m.) —We certainly agree with the principle of what Senator Newman is trying to achieve with the sunset clause. We believe that there should be a review, but we have concerns about the way this is being done. We do not think that it should be done by using this mechanism. There are other mechanisms which could be used to ensure that there is parliamentary scrutiny. Basically, this clause knocks out the legislation entirely unless there is a mechanism to revive it.

  I support what Senator Newman is saying about the concerns that this legislation has generated—the new territory that we are getting into, the uncharted waters, and all of that. But we believe that we could have done it better in other ways. We do not oppose what Senator Newman is doing, but we place on record our concerns that potentially this could lead to the loss of all these provisions in toto. We agree in principle with what Senator Newman is doing, but we have grave reservations about the way in which it is being done.

  Amendment agreed to.

  Clauses 2 and 3—by leave—taken together, and agreed to.

  Clause 4.

  Amendment (by Senator Crowley) agreed to:

(1)Clause 4, page 3, proposed paragraph 23DKA(7)(a), line 14, omit "an individual patient", substitute "a patient".

  Clause, as amended, agreed to.

  Clause 5.

  Amendment (by Senator Crowley) agreed to:

(2)Clause 5, page 3, paragraph (c), proposed paragraph 23DS(7)(a), line 34, omit "an individual patient", substitute "a patient".

  Clause, as amended, agreed to.

  Clause 6.

  Amendments (by Senator Crowley)—by leave—agreed to:

(3)Clause 6, page 4, paragraph (a), proposed subsection 129AAA(3A), lines 4 to 8, omit the subsection, substitute the following subsection:

  "`(3A) An approved pathology practitioner shall not enter into an arrangement with a practitioner or medical entrepreneur for the use or occupation by an approved pathology practitioner of any premises or any particular space in a building unless:

    (a)a licensed collection centre or an accredited pathology laboratory is established in the premises or space at the time, or within 30 days after, the arrangement is entered into; or

    (b)the approved pathology practitioner renders professional services in the premises or space;

and the premises or space are not used or occupied under the arrangement for any purpose other than use as a licensed collection centre or an accredited pathology laboratory, or use or occupation by the approved pathology practitioner for rendering professional services.';".

(4)Clause 6, page 4, paragraph (b), proposed subsection (4A), lines 13 and 14, omit "for general commercial purposes".

(5)Clause 6, page 4, paragraph (b), proposed paragraph 129AAA(4A)(a), line 18, omit "or", substitute "and".

  Clause, as amended, agreed to.

  Clauses 7 and 8—by leave—taken together, and agreed to.

  Clause 9.

  Amendment (by Senator Crowley) agreed to:

(6)Clause 9, page 5, proposed definition of "relevant offence", lines 24 to 29, omit the definition, substitute the following definition:

  "`relevant offence' is defined in section 3A;".

  Clause, as amended, agreed to.

  Amendment (by Senator Crowley) agreed to:

(7)After clause 9, page 5, insert the following new clause:

Insertion of new section

  "9A. After section 3 of the Principal Act the following section is inserted:

Definitions of relevant offence

  `3A.(1) For the purposes of this Act other than Divisions 2 and 3 of Part IID, a relevant offence is:

    (a)an offence against the Health Insurance Act 1973; or

    (b)an offence against Part VII of the National Health Act 1953; or

    (c)an offence against section 6, 7 or 7A or paragraph 86(1)(a) of the Crimes Act 1914 that relates to an offence against the Health Insurance Act 1973 or Part VII of the National Health Act 1953.

  `(2) For the purposes of Divisions 2 and 3 of Part IID, a relevant offence is:

    (a)an offence against section 128A, 128B, 129, 129AA or 129AAA of the Health Insurance Act 1973; or

    (b)an offence against subsection 84L(1) or (2) or section 103 of the National Health Act 1953; or

    (c)an offence against section 6, 7 or 7A or paragraph 86(1)(a) of the Crimes Act 1914 that relates to an offence referred to in paragraph (a) or (b); or

    (d)an offence against subsection 29A(1) or (2), section 29B, 29C, 29D or 30, paragraph 67(b) or (e) or section 86A of the Crimes Act 1914 that is an offence relating to a claim for payment in respect of the rendering of a professional service; or

    (e)an offence against section 6, 7 or 7A of the Crimes Act 1914 that relates to an offence referred to in paragraph (d).

  `(3) In paragraph 2(d):

"professional service" has the same meaning as in the Health Insurance Act 1973.'.".

  Clause 10 agreed to.

  Clause 11.

  Amendment (by Senator Crowley) proposed:

(8)Clause 11, page 6, after proposed section 8K insert the following new section:

Authorisation to exercise powers under this Part

  "`8KA.(1) The Managing Director may, by instrument in writing, authorise the powers under this Part to be exercised in connection with an investigation that the Commission is conducting, or proposes to conduct, in the performance of its functions.

  `(2) Powers under this Part must not be exercised unless they are exercised in connection with an investigation for which such an authorisation is in force.".