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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 7 Hansard (24 September) . . Page.. 2193 ..

MR MOORE (continuing):

I personally would like particularly to thank Mr Wood for his part in the process, for his willingness to consider the arguments I put in my discussion of these issues with him, and for suggesting the round table, which I thought was a very effective way of dealing with the issues. Mr Speaker, I table the statement. I move:

That the Assembly takes note of the paper.

MR WOOD (3.34): Mr Speaker, I will speak for a minute on this and then maybe we can dispense with it, unless my colleagues want to talk. We have all agreed that we want to get action on this and keep things moving. We adopted a process to do that. I want to say that we did not so much submit a report as respond to the Minister. The document does remain the Minister's document rather than any report of the committee.

As to a strategic plan, there have been long debates in this Assembly - under different headings, if you like - about what is and what is not a strategic plan. I well recall the time when Mr Moore told me that the Territory Plan was not a strategic plan. I guess, depending on what aspect you are looking at, the requirements for a strategic plan might vary. We did take a different point of view from Mr Moore in this case.

Mr Moore: And the reverse.

MR WOOD: Yes. The thing is that we do need to keep action going in the area of mental health, and I think we are taking steps to do that.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Ministerial Statement

MR MOORE (Minister for Health and Community Care) (3.35): Mr Speaker, I ask for leave of the Assembly to make a ministerial statement on the Australian health care agreement, 1998-2003.

Leave granted.

MR MOORE: The new Australian health care agreement between the Commonwealth and the ACT is a key component of financing and providing services in the public health care system. The final agreement which I signed on behalf of the Territory on 28 August 1998 covers the next five years, 1998-2003, and replaces the previous Medicare agreement. The agreement embodies a real increase in health funding to the ACT and a commitment to work cooperatively with the Commonwealth to meet key objectives in health care. As members will recall, the ACT agreed in principle on 15 January 1998 to a Commonwealth financial offer, subject to an agreed set of principles.

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