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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 10 Hansard (17 September) . .

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I would welcome their reassurance that they are not going to challenge it, because that would allow negotiations to get underway in earnest and I look forward to a sensible resolution of these matters as soon as possible.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Mr Hanson.

MR HANSON: Minister, what are those prerequisite conditions that ACT Health is demanding be provided before negotiations continue?

MR CORBELL: They are as I outlined in my answer to the previous question.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Ms Lawder.

MS LAWDER: Minister, will you require ACT Health to proceed with negotiations with the VMO Association without preconditions being agreed to?

MR CORBELL: The approach adopted by the director-general has my strong support.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Ms Lawder.

MS LAWDER: Minister, what would the effect be on Canberra patients if no agreement is reached with the Visiting Medical Officers Association?

MR CORBELL: I do not anticipate any impact on Canberrans. The provisions of the relevant legislation are that if the negotiation period cannot see resolution and agreement reached, the matters are referred to arbitration. ACT Health and the government remain committed to ensuring that this process is resolved as quickly as possible. We are adopting a constructive and sensible approach throughout and if matters are not able to be resolved during the negotiation period they will be resolved through the arbitration period.

Canberra Hospital—visiting medical officers

MR SMYTH: My question is also to the Minister for Health. Minister, ACT Health is in current discussions with the visiting medical officers concerning new contracts, but formal negotiations have not yet commenced due to the insistence by ACT Health that VMOs agree to certain pre-agreements. In the event that negotiations fail, the matter is referred to arbitration. The VMOs have identified at least two qualified arbitrators. Minister, is the current lack of commencement of formal negotiations being used by ACT Health as a tactic to force arbitration?

MR CORBELL: No.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Smyth.

MR SMYTH: Minister, in the event that arbitration of the contracts is required what is the process for appointing arbitrators?


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