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Thursday, 11 June 1970


Dr FORBES (Barker) (Minister for Health) - On behalf of the committee I present the reasons for the House of Representatives disagreeing to the amendments of the Senate. (Thereupon the Clerk read the reasons as follows):

Reason of the House of Representatives for disagreeing to Amendment No. 3 of the Senate

The amendment provides for an appeal against a determination of the Minister under sub-section (5.) of section 21 of the principal Act. The appeal is expressed to be either to the jurisdiction which determined the claim or, if the claim was not determined by a court, to the jurisdiction which would have otherwise heard the claim. In a case where the claim has been determined by a court, the appeal would be inoperative because the power of the Minister to make a determination is limited to cases where there has been a settlement of a claim by the parties. In a case where there has been such a settlement, it is not clear to what court the appeal may be taken. The appeal is, therefore, unsatisfactory. In any case, the nature of the Minister's power is such that the expense and delay of an appeal is not warranted.

Reason of the House of Representatives for disagreeing to Amendment No. 8 of the Senate

The amendment provides for an appeal against the disallowance by the Minister of a claim by a medical practitioner in respect of services rendered to pensioners under the pensioner medical service. In disallowing a claim the Minister acts in accordance wilh the report of a Committee of Inquiry constituted by medical practitioners. In makingthe report the Committee considers whetherthe number of services given were appro priate having regard to generally accepted medical standards of treatment. The basis of its investigation is, therefore, medical and not legal. An appeal to a court from the determination of the Minister is, therefore, inappropriate.

Motion (by Dr Forbes) agreed to:

That the committee's reasons be adopted.







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