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Thursday, 12 May 1960

Mr REYNOLDS (BARTON, NEW SOUTH WALES) - In the absence of the Minister for Health I direct my question to the Acting Prime Minister. Is the right honorable gentleman aware that New South Wales doctors, in a secret ballot which has just been conducted by the British Medical Association, have voted four to one against co-operating with the Government in its amended pharmaceutical benefits scheme? Is he aware also of considerable public dissatisfaction which has arisen from the discovery that the range of drugs on the 5s. list is not as wide as the public was led to believe? Further, is he aware that considerable confusion exists in the administration of the scheme due to the absence of preliminary consultation with State departments of health and doctors' and chemists' professional organizations? In these circumstances, and in view of the threats to the continuance of the scheme, will the Government make a thorough and urgent review of the scheme?

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