NG v Chinese Medicine Board of Australia [2017] NSWCATOD 36

Decision date: 15 March 2017
“PROFESSIONS AND TRADES – Where health practitioner has appealed against conditions placed on her registration – where the Chinese Medical Board concedes an error in imposing conditions and has caused removal of conditions from the Register maintained by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency –
Whether appeal is frivolous or vexatious or misconceived or lacking in substance – Consideration of objects of Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2013 (NSW) and of the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law – whether dismissal of appeal would deny appellant procedural fairness. Where continuation of appeal will not result in a practical outcome.”
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(re Dargan) Amaca Pty Limited v Northern Sydney Area Health Service & Ors [2017] NSWDDT 1

Decision date: 16 March 2017
“Dust Diseases – cross claim – mesothelioma – statutory compensation paid to plaintiff by WorkCover Queensland – agreement between WorkCover Queensland and plaintiff that in proceedings against Amaca Pty Limited, plaintiff may retain 20% of proceeds if proceeds less than compensation received – proceedings by plaintiff against Amaca Pty Limited – plaintiff’s proceedings settled for less than compensation received – whether the agreement resulted in plaintiff receiving double compensation – if so, whether Amaca Pty Limited and cross defendants were not “liable in respect of (the) damage” suffered by the plaintiff within the meaning of s 5 Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1946 (NSW) such that Amaca Pty Limited could not claim contribution from the cross defendants.”
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da HORTA -v- PODIATRY BOARD OF AUSTRALIA [2017] WASC 82

Delivered: 24 March 2017
“On about 30 November 2016, the Board notified the applicant that it had decided under s 178 and s 179 of the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law to caution him. The Board gave brief reasons for its action, finding certain failings in the applicant’s treatment of a named patient, including that he should have communicated risks and likely success or failure rates of any proposed treatment more clearly, should have conducted a more through ‘consenting process’, and that his clinical records were inadequate. It stated his professional performance ‘is or may be unsatisfactory’.”
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Abortion care in Canada is decided between a woman and her doctor, without recourse to criminal law

BMJ 2017; 356: j1506
Authors: W V Norman, J Downie
“As the UK debates decriminalisation of abortion and people wonder about the effects it might have, it may be useful to consider the Canadian experience of nearly 30 years without a criminal law to police access to abortion.”
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Psychology Board of Australia v Wilkinson (Review and Regulation) [2017] 378

Date of order: 16 March 2017
“Health Practitioner Regulation National Law (Victoria) Act 2009 – whether conduct of registered psychologist in refusing to permit on-site audit at his practice and to undergo a performance assessment constituted professional misconduct or unprofessional conduct under the National Law.”
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Decriminalisation in the NT signals abortion is part of normal health care

The Conversation, 24 March 2017
Author: Suzanne Belton
“The Northern Territory parliament this week passed a bill decriminalising abortion up to 24 weeks’ gestation, removing the requirement of parental approval for abortions in teenagers and providing early medical abortions with tablets.”
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Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia v Brewer (Review and Regulation) [2017] VCAT 384

Date of order: 17 March 2017
“Health Practitioner Regulation National Law (Victoria) Act 2009 – ss 5 & 196 – whether convictions in the Magistrates’ Court, in part concerning theft of medications, stalking, intentionally damaging property, aggravated cruelty to animals, burglary, possessing a drug of dependence, reckless conduct endangering serious injury, recklessly causing serious injury, false imprisonment and intentionally causing serious injury amount to professional misconduct within the National Law – appropriate determinations.”
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Sinopoli v Harrison (Human Rights) [2017] VCAT 355 (10 March 2017)

Date of order: 10 March 2017
“Applicant claims that in the delivery of services and in withdrawing services the Respondents unlawfully discriminated against her and victimised her – Applicant directed to produce all her evidence – Respondents then applied for claim to be struck out or dismissed – dismissal appropriate if claim is obviously hopeless or unsustainable – Tribunal’s approach is cautious – insufficient evidence to establish on balance of probabilities that Respondents victimised or unlawfully discriminated against Applicant – other issues raised by the Applicant not covered by the relevant legislation – outside jurisdiction – Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 1998 s75 – Equal Opportunity Act 2010 ss 6,7,8,9,103,104.”
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Cross-sectional survey on defensive practices and defensive behaviours among Israeli psychiatrists

BMJ Open 2017; 7:e014153.
Authors: Reuveni I, Pelov I, Reuveni H, et al
“Psychiatry is a low-risk specialisation; however, there is a steady increase in malpractice claims against psychiatrists. Defensive psychiatry (DP) refers to any action undertaken by a psychiatrist to avoid malpractice liability that is not for the sole benefit of the patient’s mental health and well-being. The objectives of this study were to assess the scope of DP practised by psychiatrists and to understand whether awareness of DP correlated with defensive behaviours.”
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Aid-in-Dying Laws and the Physician’s Duty to Inform

JME Blog, 22 March 2017
Author: Mara Buchbinder
“Why do so many people assume that any clinical communication about aid-in-dying (AID, also known as assisted suicide), where it is legal, ought to be patient-initiated? Physician participants in my ongoing study tend to assume that physicians should wait for patients to initiate discussions of AID. The clinical ethics literature on communication about AID has reinforced this expectation by focusing on how to respond to patient requests. Consequently, bioethics has largely remained silent on whether there is a professional duty to inform terminally ill patients about AID laws and their clinical and legal requirements.”
Find article here.