Page 177 - Week 01 - Wednesday, 28 November 2012

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MADAM SPEAKER: Sorry, irrespective of whether you were just finishing, if I call your attention to relevance I expect you to respond, and I expect that of all members.

Health—health promotion grants program

MR DOSZPOT: My question is to the Minister for Health. Clause 5.2 of the Labor-Greens parliamentary agreement states that funding under the health promotion grants program will be focused on achieving positive health outcomes for children. What programs will not receive new funding as they do not meet this focus?

MS GALLAGHER: I do welcome the Liberals’ intense interest in section 5 of the parliamentary agreement for the Eighth Assembly. It is very flattering that it is getting so much attention. I am very happy to talk about section 5.2 on the basis of our very extensive health commitments that we went to the election on, most of which were copied by the Canberra Liberals, which we also take as great flattery. The highest compliment that can be paid is when one copies our entire election plan.

The health promotion grants program, as members would be aware, has an annual process of just over $2 million. I have been in discussions with a number of non-government organisations, many who work in the health sector, about making sure that that $2 million a year—$2 million a year—that goes out the door actually returns some positive health benefits that are measurable. I know that Mr Smyth will agree with me there. If you are allocating $2 million, we should be able to evaluate and measure whether that is having any impact on our preventative health strategy and improving health. Basically, when we look at our Chief Health Officer’s report, I cannot say that that has been delivered on current statistics available to the government.

Mr Hanson: Why don’t you get a task force together then and have an ACT preventative health strategy?

MS GALLAGHER: The task force is already in place, as I explained to you during the election campaign. It is another one where you came and copied the work that was already underway in the health area.

Mr Hanson: You have a preventative health task force, have you? You have a preventative health strategy?

MS GALLAGHER: We do, Mr Hanson. The work has been under development—

Opposition members interjecting—

MADAM SPEAKER: Order, members!

MS GALLAGHER: I am so happy that you find it so entertaining, Mr Hanson—the fact that you are the—

MADAM SPEAKER: Standing order 42, Chief Minister.

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