Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 6 Hansard (19 June) . . Page.. 2122 ..
MS DUNDAS (continuing):
Victoria has moved in the same direction, by establishing accreditation of nurse practitioners to take pathology samples. This initiative will bring us into line, and I'm sure it will be supported. It will also help to establish the University of Canberra as a training facility of nurse practitioners for our neighbours in New South Wales and Victoria. This will allow nurses, both locally and interstate, to participate in a high level, high quality course.
This is an exciting initiative and I welcome it being brought on today. I believe it will deliver real benefits to the community in the short, medium and long term. It deserves support, as it will encourage our doctors and nurses.
MR CORBELL(Minister for Health and Minister for Planning) (12.07): I thank members for their support for this important piece of legislation. In doing so, I stress that this is the first stage in providing for nurse practitioners to operate in the ACT. This allows for the accreditation of nurse practitioners through the Nurses Board, and, in particular, it allows the University of Canberra, through its School of Nursing, to start to offer the relevant qualification to accredit those people through a tertiary institution.
The second stage of the government's legislation will deal with substantive amendments to a range of acts which relate to the practice of nurse practitioners-the administering of medicine, the treatment phase and the necessary legislative protection nurse practitioners will need for that. I thank members for their support for this important reform.
Question resolved in the affirmative.
Bill agreed to in principle.
Bill, by leave, taken as a whole.
MR CORBELL(Minister for Health and Minister for Planning) (12.09): I seek leave to move Amendments No 1 and 2 circulated in my name together [see schedule 1 at page 2161].
MR CORBELL: I move amendments No 1 and No 2. These amendments deal with a range of issues that were raised by the Scrutiny of Bills Committee, in relation to subclause 14(5) of the bill, which gave no guidance as to the circumstances in which the Nurses Board of the ACT may attach conditions. The Nurses Board has these powers in order to protect the public.
When the Nurses Act was originally written in 1988, the wording of this did not have to be specific. The government agrees with the committee's concern and agrees that the wording is not specific. This amendment seeks to provide the Nurses Board with the authority to attach conditions to a nurse's registration in order to protect the public.
In cases where a person's registration is being ceased, the proposed Nurses Amendment Bill 2003 directs the Nurses Board to provide written notice to registered nurses, but not