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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 02 Hansard (Tuesday, 23 February 2010) . . Page.. 490 ..


MS GALLAGHER: Mr Speaker, I withdraw that claim, and rest assured that I am going over all of Mr Hanson’s comments because there is a fair bit of flexibility and inaccuracy in the comments that he makes, both in the media and in this place. But on all measures, in terms of our clinical outcomes, we in this place should be very proud of our health system and of the clinicians and all the staff that work across it. In terms of the areas of pressure, they are in timeliness around the emergency department, which is quite different to health outcomes, which Mr Hanson fails to understand, and in terms of non-urgent elective surgery. Those are two areas of pressure for the health system. But that is not a health outcome.

Mr Hanson: I have a point of order, because the minister is talking about health outcomes and the question was specifically about the key performance indicators. So I would ask her to refer to those. She is talking about health statistics, perhaps, and the fact that, as a health jurisdiction, they are the health outcomes. We are talking about the key performance indicators of the performance of our health system, which are the subject of the Productivity Commission’s report. So she is skewing this by saying that the health outcomes that we are talking about in terms of mortality rates and life expectancy may be good but that is not—

MR SPEAKER: Mr Hanson, which standing order are you seeking to make your point of order on?

Mr Hanson: This is a point of order on relevance. She is not answering the question because we are not asking a question about those health outcomes; it is about the key performance indicators of the health system.

MR SPEAKER: I think, Mr Hanson, you are debating—

Mr Stanhope: So performance indicators, not outcomes.

MR SPEAKER: Order! I think, Mr Hanson, you are debating the substance of Ms Gallagher’s answer rather than the point of order. Ms Gallagher, you have some time remaining, if you wish.

MS GALLAGHER: Thank you, Mr Speaker. I think I have answered the question.

Mr Smyth: No, you haven’t.

MS GALLAGHER: Well, I have. With respect to all the performance indicators—and these include clinical indicators—the ACT health system performs very well. There are areas of pressure in the emergency department and in elective surgery in terms of access and timeliness, and we are working on that. But that does not translate into poor health outcomes, which is a line that Mr Hanson continues to run in the media.

MR SPEAKER: Mr Coe, a supplementary?

MR COE: Minister, which particular or specific indicators in the report support your assessment?


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