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HEALTH INSURANCE ACT 1973 - SECT 124W

Interpretation

             (1)  In this Part, unless the contrary intention appears:

"authority" , in relation to the disclosure of information, means an authority given by the Minister under section 124Z that is in force when the disclosure takes place.

"court" includes a tribunal, authority or person having power to require the production of documents or the answering of questions.

"declared quality assurance activity" means a quality assurance activity in respect of which a declaration by the Minister under section 124X is in force when the activity is engaged in.

"disclose" , in relation to information, means give, reveal, or communicate in any way.

"health service" includes any administrative or other service related to a health service.

"person" , except in the reference to another person in section 124ZB, includes a committee or other body of persons, whether incorporated or unincorporated, and includes a member of such a committee or other body.

"produce" includes permit access to.

"quality" , in relation to health services provided by a person, includes the practices of the person in providing the services or the competence of the person to provide the services.

"quality assurance activity" means:

                     (a)  an assessment or evaluation of the quality, or a study of the incidence or causes of conditions or circumstances that may affect the quality, of health services provided by a person, whether before or after the commencement of this Part, being:

                              (i)  services in respect of which payments were made, or that are or would be eligible for payments, under Part II or IV; or

                             (ii)  services relating to the prescribing of pharmaceutical products in respect of which payments were made, or that are or would be eligible for payments, under Division 3 of Part VII of the National Health Act 1953 ; or

                            (iii)  services in respect of which payments were made under the former Health Care (Appropriation) Act 1998 , or that are or would be eligible for such payments; or

                     (b)  the making of a recommendation about the provision of those services as a result of such an assessment, evaluation or study; or

                     (c)  the monitoring of the implementation of such a recommendation.

"serious offence" means an offence punishable by imprisonment for a period of more than one year.

             (2)  For the purposes of this Part:

                     (a)  information about a matter is not taken to have become known merely because of the existence or dissemination of suspicions, allegations or rumours about that matter; and

                     (b)  information may be taken to have become known solely as a result of a declared quality assurance activity even though it was previously known to a person whose actions have been or are being investigated by the persons engaging in the quality assurance activity.



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