Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Current HansardDownload Current Hansard    View Or Save XMLView/Save XML

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Thursday, 7 December 2006
Page: 9


Mr ABBOTT (Minister for Health and Ageing) (9:35 AM) —I move:

That this bill be now read a second time.

This bill provides for the transition from the current regulatory regime to the new Private Health Insurance Bill. It also provides for the repeal of redundant parts of the National Health Act 1953 and Health Insurance Act 1973 and makes amendments to a range of other acts, mainly to reflect changes in the definitions of insurers and the products they offer.

An important transitional measure of this bill provides that facilities that were declared as hospitals under the National Health Act 1953 or the Health Insurance Act 1973 will be taken to be public or private hospitals under the proposed new act until 1 July 2008. This provides a period for hospitals to make an application to be declared a hospital under the proposed new act.

This bill also provides for outreach services declared under the National Health Act 1953 to be treated as hospital treatment under the proposed new act until 1 July 2008.

The bill provides a transitional registration regime for organisations registered as insurers under the National Health Act 1953 to be taken as private health insurers under the proposed new act until 1 July 2008. To ensure consistent standards of good governance the bill will also require all existing health insurance providers to be corporations registered by Australian Securities Investment Commission by 1 April 2008.

The bill also clarifies that a health benefits fund conducted by an insurer registered under the National Health Act 1953 that existed before the commencement of the proposed new act, including all of its assets and liabilities, is taken to be a health benefits fund under the proposed new act.

I commend the bill to the House.

Debate (on motion by Mr Edwards) adjourned.