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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 13 Hansard (Wednesday, 26 November 2014) . . Page.. 4019 ..


Wednesday, 26 November 2014

MADAM SPEAKER (Mrs Dunne) took the chair at 10 am and asked members to stand in silence and pray or reflect on their responsibilities to the people of the Australian Capital Territory.

Canberra Hospital—obstetrics unit

MR HANSON (Molonglo—Leader of the Opposition) (10.01): I move:

That this Assembly:

(1) notes that:

(a) the ACT Health Minister Katy Gallagher has failed to resolve serious and ongoing issues in the maternity service at The Canberra Hospital (TCH);

(b) in February 2010, staff of the Obstetrics and Gynaecology unit at TCH made serious complaints about the unit and at least 13 doctors resigned;

(c) in 2010, the Canberra Liberals called for a Board of Inquiry that was rejected by the minister. However, a subsequent review of the maternity unit found:

(i) a lack of cohesion amongst the executive team and considerable confusion over roles and functions of senior management;

(ii) reporting lines between TCH and ACT Health were “blurred” and that the “chain of command often fails”;

(iii) numerous serious complaints made by staff were not addressed and that their complaints were ignored in a “systematic and long-standing reticence by management to address disruptive or inappropriate behaviour”;

(iv) inadequate clinical governance;

(v) significant staff shortages;

(vi) a heavy on load call inconsistent with the safe working hours concept;

(vii) poorly coordinated clinical handover between shifts; and

(viii) significant reductions in gynaecological surgery;

(d) in 2012, serious concerns were again raised by staff and the ANF about the maternity unit at TCH, including:

(i) a flawed model of care that resulted in mothers being discharged only six hours after giving birth;


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