New Laws To Put Patient Safety First

The Andrews Labor Government is calling for comment on proposals to strengthen patient safety requirements in private hospitals and day procedure centres and crack down on dodgy unregulated cosmetic surgery.

A discussion paper has been prepared seeking views about updates required to modernise the Health Services (Private Hospitals & Day Procedure Centres) Regulations. These changes will hold all hospitals and day surgery centres to the same standard, so Victorians can receive safe procedures no matter where they have them.

The regulations support the Health Legislation Amendment (Quality & Safety) Act passed in Parliament last month.

These tough new regulations will build on the requirements introduced for public health services as part of the Targeting Zero: supporting the Victorian hospital system to eliminate avoidable harm and strengthen quality of care report by Dr Stephen Duckett last year.

The proposals will now require any medical or surgical procedure requiring the use of general anaesthesia or intravenous sedation to be undertaken in a registered hospital or day procedure centre.

Unregulated cosmetic surgery clinics has created serious patient safety risks and these changes will help us crack down on rogue providers and maintain a high level of quality and safety standards across the sector.

Under the changes, affected services would have the choice of:

  • Upgrading and registering the facilities with the Department of Health & Human Services
  • Using the services of a registered mobile anaesthetic or sedation service
  • Undertaking procedures in an existing registered facility.

The discussion paper can be accessed at https://www2.health.vic.gov.au/hospitals-and-health-services/private-hospitals and written submissions close on Friday 8 December 2017.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jill Hennessy

“We make no apology for introducing requirements that provide strengthened standards of quality and safety that all patients expect whenever or wherever they receive health services.”

“Patients are entitled to the highest standards of safe care no matter where they receive their treatment.”

“This public consultation will give stakeholders and Victorians a chance to have a say on how this important law is implemented across our state.”