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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 06 Hansard (Wednesday, 23 June 2010) . . Page.. 2358 ..


Mr Stanhope: She tabled the letter, for God’s sake.

MR SESELJA: She tabled it when she was asked to. When she was reading from it, she omitted to read from the most important part. She omitted to read the most important part:

If you accept this date, please re-categorise this patient as a ‘2a Staged Procedure’ …

That goes to the heart of the claims that have been made by patients and by doctors. They have been dismissed as absolutely baseless. Apparently they have all gotten it wrong. Ms Gallagher says that Mr Hanson does not understand, that it is because Mr Hanson does not understand. Apparently Dr Hughes does not understand either. And many other people do not—just simply do not understand, the way that this minister does, why these patients are being recategorised.

It does beg the question of why Dr Hughes would make this up. Why would Dr Hughes make this up? Why would Mr Wentworth make this up? They are effectively being called liars by members of this government, yet we have documentation there that says that they are being recategorised. It suggests that what Ms Gallagher said yesterday in the Assembly is not correct. “Is it in accordance with policy?” “It would not be in accordance with the policy.” But now she says it is.

You cannot have it both ways. They are being asked. They have been contacting doctors to ask that they downgrade their patients: “If you want the date, you will downgrade.” Ms Gallagher has a lot of questions to answer—a lot of further questions to answer. I commend my amendment to the Assembly.

MR HARGREAVES (Brindabella) (9.17): W need to understand a couple of things in the search for the conspiracy theory that seems to be abroad at the moment. One of them is something that Mr Seselja said which I thought was absolutely on the money. He said, “You have got to read between the lines.” Well, I do not. I generally read the first line and the next one. I do not try to read in between; I do not try to interpret it. He has got a missive from the hospital to a doctor, and he says, as he said here in this chamber not too long ago, “Yeah, but you’ve got to read between the lines.” If anybody says that you have to read between the lines, that shows me only that they are looking for something and are having a little bit of trouble finding it. But they will continue to pursue it.

What we are seeing here is the holding up of a letter to the doctors from the hospital as if it is something new. The minister has tabled essentially the processes which have been available for people to look at for a couple of years, but those opposite have not seen them. What we are seeing, and these people across here either have not twigged to it or do not understand it, is that this same letter, this same approach—seeking for doctors to review the clinical decision, the clinical responsibility that they have for their patients, seeking for them to look at it again—happens quite regularly. The worst-case scenario is that they get a letter every quarter saying, “Would you like to have another look at it, please?”


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