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Tuesday, 22 August 1972
Page: 217

Senator MCAULIFFE (QUEENSLAND) - My question is addressed to the Minister representing the Minister for Social Services. By way of preface I point out that the Department of Social Services issues pensioners with hearing aid units, calaids/ E type, at a rental of $10. Is it a fact that batteries for these units cost pensioners $2.60 for a set of 6 which last 480 hours, whereas 6 batteries for other privately purchased units cost 40c less and last 50 per cent longer? Will the Minister consider issuing units which use the more economically priced batteries or, better still, put batteries used for this purpose on the free list?

Senator GREENWOOD - I am unable of my own knowledge to confirm or deny any of the propositions which the honourable senator has stated. I am quite sure that the Minister for Social Services will be most interested to do something about the matter if what the honourable senator alleges is true. I shall convey the substance of the honourable senator's question to the Minister. I am sure that he will examine the matter closely. I shall endeavour to obtain an answer for the honourable senator as quickly as possible.

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