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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 02 Hansard (Thursday, 11 May 1995) . . Page.. 455 ..


MR WHITECROSS: I ask a supplementary question. Noting Mr De Domenico's answer, I ask: Whom is the Government consulting or whom will ACTEW be consulting about these community service obligations?

MR DE DOMENICO: I do not know the answer to that question.

Woden Valley Hospital - Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

MR KAINE: I address a question to the Chief Minister and Minister for Health and Community Care. Chief Minister, can you tell the Assembly why the neonatal intensive care unit has been closed and what action has been taken as a result of this closure to make sure that people's needs are taken care of?

MRS CARNELL: Rotavirus - that is something that Mr Connolly knows something about - which is an infectious viral disease causing severe gastroenteritis in infants and young children, has been isolated in a new baby in the neonatal intensive care unit at Woden Valley Hospital. Rotavirus is certainly not uncommon during the winter months, although this is somewhat early. There has been a cross-infection to two other newly born babies. These three infants have been isolated and moved out of the unit. To protect the eight babies remaining in the unit, access by siblings has ceased and other staff and visitors with symptoms of respiratory or gastrointestinal illness have been asked not to visit. Until all babies in the unit are cleared of possible infection, the unit will be unable to admit any neonate requiring ventilation. These babies will be stabilised, where necessary and when necessary, and transferred to an appropriate centre through the neonatal emergency transport system. An alternative area to cater for babies who do not require ventilation but need intensive care has already been established in the maternity building.

ACTEW - Corporatisation

MR CONNOLLY: I would have deferred to the member who never misses a question time, but I see that he is not here again today. My question is addressed to Mr De Domenico as Minister for Urban Services. Is the Minister aware that charges for water do not currently cover, and indeed for many years have not covered, the cost of providing that service? Since company directors in a corporate form are required to act in the best commercial interests of a company, does this mean that a corporatised ACTEW will increase the cost of water to Canberra ratepayers?

MR DE DOMENICO: I thank the member for the question. The answer is “Not necessarily”.


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