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Thursday, 22 November 1973
Page: 3689

Mr STALEY (Chisholm) - I wish to make a personal explanation.

Mr SPEAKER -Does the honourable member claim to have been misrepresented?

Mr STALEY - Yes, in a report in the Canberra Times' this morning of a question I asked of the Minister for Social Security (Mr Hayden) in this House yesterday. The report states:

The increase in pharmacy charges for making up prescriptions was granted to the pharmaceutical profession without any demur at all, the Minister for Social Security, Mr Hayden, told Mr Staley . . . . who asked in the House of Representatives yesterday if the Labor Government had been over-generous in granting the recent 8 per cent increase. Mr Hayden said the increase restored proper and amicable relations between the profession and the Government.

In fact, I asked the Minister whether he had claimed in a recent article that the Government had made a generous increase in pharmaceutical benefits; whether it was a fact that he said that this increase had been constantly rejected by the previous Government and whether this was not totally misleading in view of the fact that all the Minister was doing was putting into practice agreements reached between the pharmacists and the Liberal-Country Party Government early last year. I asked him, therefore, whether he was not distorting the situation and using mislead ing propaganda in precisely the way that he so often accuses others of doing.

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