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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 2 Hansard (18 February) . .

Page.. 611..

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

The Transplantation and Anatomy Act 1978 is being amended to resolve the following key issues: the act does not clearly state that suitably trained officers who are not doctors can remove whole organs where only parts of the organs such as heart valves are to be used. This has led to uncertainty about whether the process is endorsed by the act. Secondly, the coroner can only provide consent for donation of organs after a person has died. For the best outcome, organs must be harvested within five minutes after the person's heart stops. If there are any issues with contacting the coroner, the organs may be collected too late for the best outcome or collection may not be viable at all.

These amendments will provide for amendment of section 29(4) of the act to enable the coroner to provide direction prior to death that coroner's consent is not required for organ donation to occur following death; secondly, amendment of section 31(5) to define "relevant tissue" as any tissue or whole organ necessary to support effective transplantation of musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, eye and skin tissues; thirdly, a minor amendment to the wording of sections 29(1), 34(1) and 40(1) to simplify the wording describing the circumstances where a coroner may be required to hold an inquest into the death of a person.

The object of the amendment to section 29(4) of the act is to enable a coroner to advise before the person dies that the coroner's consent is not required after the death for organ donation. Most states and territories already make this provision in their legislation. The amendment to section 31(5) clarifies that suitably trained officers can remove whole organs for the purpose of supporting safe transport and storage of tissues for transplant.

It is anticipated that these reforms will improve the efficiency, effectiveness, timely delivery and quality of services in the organ and tissue donation sector in the ACT. I commend the bill to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Hanson) adjourned to the next sitting.

Standing orders—co-sponsorship of bills

Proposed amendments

MR RATTENBURY (Molonglo—Minister for Corrections, Minister for Education, Minister for Justice and Consumer Affairs and Minister for Road Safety) (12.20): I move:

That the standing orders be amended as follows:

(1) standing order 168(b), after "Member" insert "and, if a co-sponsored bill, by another Member whose name is on the bill.";

(2) standing order 168(c), after "notice" omit all words and substitute "a Member (or in the case of a co-sponsored bill, one of the co-sponsors) shall present to the Assembly two printed copies of the bill signed by that Member (or in the case of a co-sponsored bill, the co-sponsors) and an explanatory statement to the bill.";

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