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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 4 Hansard (8 May) . . Page.. 1303..


Mr Hanson interjecting—

MS GALLAGHER: Mr Hanson, we do support competition in the retail space. I note the Chamber of Commerce and Industry were at the announcement today and supportive of the announcement that was being made for the future of our city. Indeed, if you take the time to meet with an organisation like IKEA, the interest that is generated in the retail space around their location actually being in Canberra is good for local business. We expect it will attract people to Canberra from the region who may otherwise have gone to Sydney or Melbourne. What we will see is them coming to Canberra.

This is good on every level and should not be talked down by the opposition. If you find yourselves able to talk down this announcement, it is a new low for you guys. An IKEA store coming to Canberra, generating jobs, generating activity and building up the future of the Majura Park precinct—if you are able to put a negative slant on that then that is a real new low for you guys.

ACT Ambulance Service—defibrillators

MR SMYTH: My question is to the minister for emergency services. Minister, on 30 October 2013, you stated in this Assembly:

People, rightly, expect that, if the worst happens and they have a heart attack or a friend or family member does, the ambulance officers that respond have equipment that enables them to deal with that heart attack. Well, at no point in time have these defibrillators operated in a manner that meant they did not work in terms of the electric shock treatment.

Minister, since issuing this assurance, have there been any cardiac arrest cases where the territory's defibrillators did not deliver shocks to the patient?

MR CORBELL: I am not aware today of any particular incidents of that nature. I will go and review the record in case there are incidents that have been reported earlier, but as far as I can recall there has not been a single instance where that has occurred. And this is confirmed, to that extent, by the comments of both the chief officer of ACT ambulance and the union representing our paramedics, who are both on the public record now repeatedly saying at no time have these technical issues with our defibrillator equipment compromised patient safety. I think that is a very strong endorsement and confirmation from the front line as to exactly what the circumstances are.

We are working through a range of technical issues but they have largely been resolved. There are a number of minor issues as we go through the battery replacement program. As I have indicated previously, the manufacturer has issued a worldwide recall of the batteries that are used to power the defibrillators because there has been a faulty batch, and we were the recipient of that faulty batch. So they have withdrawn that and they are replacing them. That is the appropriate thing for them to do, and they are doing that consistent with the terms of the contract, at no additional cost to the ACT and with their full cooperation with ACT ambulance.


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