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Wednesday, 13 November 1974
Page: 2314

Senator WHEELDON (Western AustraliaMinister for Repatriation and Compensation) - I do not think that at this stage I can give any more thorough an answer than I gave last night. That is, I am advised that the existing staff is satisfactory to deal with the additional number of patients who will be attending the newly reopened Birrallee Convalescent Home and that in fact there will be a transfer of patients and staff from the Repatriation General Hospital in Adelaide to Birrallee. I understand that the number of staff will be satisfactory.

While I am on my feet, perhaps I could refer to another matter. During the course of the debate last night a question was asked of me by Senator Baume relating to the use of the child care centre at the Repatriation General Hospital at Concord. In my answer I said, amongst other things, that a fee of $2 a week was being charged for the children who are making use of this child care centre. In fact that information was incorrect. The fee is $2 per day and I should like to make that correction and apologise to the Senate for the misinformation which I provided.

One other matter to which I should refer relates to Division 925-2-02 in the estimates of the Repatriation Department. During the course of the sitting of Estimates Committee E Senator Baume asked a question relating to items of expenditure involved under this heading and an undertaking was given by the Secretary of the Repatriation Commission that this information would be made available to members of the Committee. As it happens, the information was not made available to members of the Committee, although my understanding is that this was not through any failure on the part of the Commission. In fact the information was prepared but, for some reason, it was not distributed. I have made available to Senator Baume a copy of the information that was required and at this stage I would seek the permission of the honourable senators to incorporate that information in Hansard, which would otherwise have been incorporated as an appendix to the report of the Committee.

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