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Thursday, 12 November 1959

Dr DONALD CAMERON (OXLEY, QUEENSLAND) . - It makes no difference whether the illness requires medical or surgical treatment. What the bill says, in clause 10 (b), is that the DirectorGeneral shall approve payment of fund benefit if he is satisfied that -

(i)   the special account contributor was suffering from an illness or injury requiring hospital treatment of the kind provided in public hospitals so recognized; and

(ii)   the treatment provided was of a standard substantially equivalent to the standard of the treatment that he would have received at a public hospital so recognized.

Of course, the treatment of a patient in a hospital may be very much the same, whatever sort of illness he is suffering from. What the bill means is that the treatment must be of a standard substantially equivalent to the standard of public hospital treatment.I refer to such aspects of treatment as nursing attention, the provision of proper appliances and proper arrangements for taking temperatures and so on. A patient, for instance, may have pneumonia, in which case arrangements would have to be made to provide him with oxygen. All those things are taken into account to ensure that the treatment is in fact real hospital treatment.

Clause agreed to.

Clauses 11 and 12 agreed to.

Clause 13 -

Sections eighty-five, eighty-six and eighty-seven of the Principal Act are repealed and the following sections inserted in their stead: -

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