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Duckett review imminent

Posted 20 May 2016

The much-awaited Duckett Review into Victoria's public health safety - on the back of the Bacchus Marsh baby death tragedies - will be made public in the next eight weeks, the Minister for Health Jill Hennessy has promised.

The Minister, speaking at the recent VHA Governance Conference, said the report from Professor Stephen Duckett was nearing completion. She indicated there would be change ahead, and flagged clinicians would be more involved in governance in the future.

“There is an immutable truth, we have to strengthen clinical governance in our health system,” she said. “We have a lot more work to do in the quality and safety space.”

The Minister foreshadowed several themes to be highlighted in the Duckett Review including:

  • Strengthened clinical voices at the centre of Victoria’s health system in the Department of Health and Human Services
  • Greater analysis of data and more consideration of patient outcomes and feedback
  • Clinical governance expertise on hospital boards, noting that board members cannot ‘contract out’ their obligations as directors
  • Stronger relationships between different hospitals and health services

Minster Hennessy gave the sector her commitment that hospitals would be supported to develop the right models of care for their communities.

She also spoke of the importance of a zero tolerance of bullying in the health system.

“It’s everyone’s job to be able to identify poor behavior,” said Ms Hennessy, who has just released a new anti-bullying strategy, Eliminating Bullying and Harassment in healthcare was developed in response to a Victorian Auditor-General’s investigation that exposed an underlying culture of acceptance of bullying and harassment in Victoria’s health system.

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