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Thursday, 25 October 1973
Page: 1458


Senator DAVIDSON (SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - My question is directed to the Minister representing the Minister for Health. I ask: Has the Minister's attention been drawn to the reference in the report of the Director-General of Health tabled yesterday that the number of prescriptions for tranquillisers nearly trebled in the last 12 months? Does the Minister agree that this represents a situation with serious social as well as medical and even political implications? Will he ask his colleagues to undertake a program of research into the reasons for this increase and seek the cooperation of social workers and others engaged in welfare work?


Senator Douglas McClelland (NEW SOUTH WALES) - I did notice the reference in the annual report of the Director-General of Health that the number of prescriptions for tranquillisers had nearly trebled in the last 12 months. For some considerable time all members of the Australian Parliamentboth in this place and in another place- have been referring to this problem. I know it is a matter that is causing the Government some concern. The Minister for Health, Dr Everingham, is giving the matter consideration. I will refer the honourable senator's question to him and ascertain whether the suggestions the honourable senator has made about social workers will be heeded.







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