Page 494 - Week 02 - Wednesday, 13 February 2013

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But, more broadly across Canberra, having a unit that specialises in subacute care will significantly enhance the services that we can currently provide that are provided at a number of different locations across Canberra, whether it be out at Kambah, with the aged care and rehab centre there, at Canberra Hospital, at Calvary or indeed with some of the services that are offered in nursing homes. Again, if we can co-locate those and use the strength of the university, the capacity to provide students with those great clinical opportunities and provide high quality care to the people of Canberra, it is going to be a really good outcome for all of us.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Mr Hanson.

MR HANSON: Minister, in what other areas of Health is the ACT having difficulties in retaining or recruiting staff?

MS GALLAGHER: From time to time there will be vacancies that exist in a whole range of different areas across the health profession. It is a massive employer in town, and I can say that from time to time we juggle recruitment difficulties in medical, nursing, allied health with specialist services like medical physicists. It is the nature of the business we operate.

As Canberra’s health system grows—and this is one of the benefits of having a regional health service—we are having less trouble recruiting to highly specialised positions. Our separation rate is very good in terms of people leaving the Health Directorate, and I think that is really encouraging. It shows that the system is getting to a point where people, certainly high-level specialists, are wanting to come and work in Canberra and provide their skills here. We are retaining the staff that we are developing.

Look at the interns, for example. Look at the medical graduates that are coming out from the university. I think we are taking 99 of them this year, up from about 80 last year; that is, our own medical graduates being trained in Canberra, wanting to stay and work across the public health system. And that is a credit to the way the health system is managed. It is a credit to the universities for the partnership and it shows what a good employer the Health Directorate is.

Environment—Better Place

MRS JONES: My question is to the Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development. Minister, in a press release dated 24 July 2009, you stated:

The Government is also striving to achieve zero net emissions in the ACT, and this announcement by Better Place will give Canberrans another way that they can help work towards this target …

Minister, what was the cost to ACT taxpayers of the support given to Better Place?

MR CORBELL: The government had no contractual relationship with Better Place. The government had an agreement with Better Place to cooperate on technical and

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