New South Wales
Wallace v Kam  NSWCA 82
Mr Wallace (the appellant) suffered bilateral femoral neurapraxia after undergoing fusion in his lumbar spine by neurosurgeon Mr Kam (the respondent). The appellant sought damages for the respondent's failure to warn of the material risks of the operation, namely, the risk of neurapraxia and a 5% risk of paralysis.
The trial judge held that the appellant did not establish that he would have declined the treatment if warned of the neurapraxia risk. The risk of paralysis did not materialise and was therefore irrelevant.
The appellant appealed to the Court of Appeal, arguing that he would not have agreed to the treatment had he known of the risk of paralysis.
The Civil Liability Act 2002 (NSW) required proof of factual causation and scope of liability (section 5D(1)).
Allsop P held that the trial judge did not undertake a full factual analysis. The appellant was entitled to consider all risks in his decision. Basten JA disagreed and cited Rosenberg v Percival that "the risk must be related in a physical sense to the injury". Therefore there was no factual causation. However, both judges agreed that the scope of liability did not extend in this case because the risks were distinct to each other.
Beazley JA (dissenting) held that an undisclosed risk, which is one of a "cluster of risks", does not need to materialise to establish causation. If the plaintiff would have refused treatment if warned of the risk, the scope of liability could extend.
The appeal was dismissed.
Therapeutic Goods (Listing) Notice 2012 (No. 2) - F2012L00991 " as made
Private Health Insurance (Prostheses) Amendment Rules 2012 (No. 2) - F2012L00989 " as made
Therapeutic Goods (Listing) Notice 2012 (No. 1) - F2012L00990 " as made
Health Insurance (Patient Episode Initiation) Revocation Determination 2012 -F2012L00958 " as made
Health Insurance (Poly Implant Prosthese) Amendment Determination 2012 (No. 2) - F2012L00957 " as made
National Health (Highly specialised drugs program for hospitals) Special Arrangement Amendment Instrument 2012 (No. 3) (No. PB 31 of 2012) - F2012L00952 " PB 31 of 2012 as made
National Health (Efficient Funding of Chemotherapy) Special Arrangement Amendment Instrument 2012 (No. 3) (No. PB 32 of 2012) - F2012L00951 " PB 32 of 2012 as made
Hospital Networks Governing Councils Act 2012 - Assent: 27 April 2012
Medicines, Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Act 2012 - Assent: 27 April 2012
Australia. Department of Health & Ageing
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- 2 May 2012 - Prominent Scientist and Regulator appointed new Head of TGA
- 30 April 2012 - New Blood Processing Centre Opens in Melbourne
- 27 April 2012 - Standing Council on Health Communique
Private Health Insurance Circulars
- PHI 30/12 2012 Lifetime Health Cover Direct Mailout
- PHI 29/12 Round 15 (2010-11) and Round 16 (2011-12) National Hospital Cost Data Collection for Private and Private Day Hospital Facilities
Australian Competition & Consumer Commission
3 May 2012 - ACCC tackles Homeopathy Plus! Whooping Cough claims - Homeopathy Plus! Pty Ltd has removed representations from its website that the Australian Competi...- Release # NR 086/12
Australia. Therapeutic Goods AdministrationOrphan drugs - Added ivacaftor to the list of designated orphan drugs.
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Prominent Scientist and Regulator appointed new Head of TGA - Dr John Skerritt has been appointed the new national manager of the TGA.
Prescription medicine BPR update newsletter, April 2012 - April 2012 issue of the Prescription Medicines Business Process Review newsletter.
Labelling and packaging review - Update regarding the labelling and packaging review.
Australian Institute of Health & Welfare
Australian Capital Territory. Department of Health
- 1 May 2012 - Smoking in cars with children banned - Katy Gallagher, MLA
- 1 May 2012 - Chief Minister urges women to participate in cervical screening program - Katy Gallagher, MLA
2 May 2012 - Support for energy plant at Canberra Hospital - Chief Minister and Minister for Health, Katy Gallagher MLA today announced the first stage of consultation on planning for Canberra Hospital's future energy requirements has found broad support for power generation on site. - Read More
Canberra Hospital Energy Sustainability - You are invited to attend a follow up consultation session in the Canberra Hospital Auditorium at 6pm Wednesday 2 May that will provide feedback on the information that has been received from the community and resulting outcomes from the public consultation period. Canberra Hospital Energy Sustainability
New South Wales. Ministry of Health
- 3 May 2012 - NSW Health sends senior experts in to fix cleaning services at Royal North Shore Hospital
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New South Wales. Health Statistics NSW
23 April 2012 - Intentional self-harm hospitalisations by sex
23 April 2012 - Fall-related injury hospitalisations by LHD and sex
Northern Territory. Budget 2012
Queensland. Department of Health
- 2 May 2012 - Springborg Inspects The Townsville Hospital Redevelopment
- 2 May 2012 - Townsville Paediatric Intensive Care Unit
- 1 May 2012 - Australia Nursing Awards
- 30 April 2012 - Minister for Health committed to improving specialist services at Cairns Base Hospital
- 30 April 2012 - Agreement reached with nurse's union
South Australia. Department of Health
- 2 May 2012 - New Aboriginal health and learning centre
- 30 April 2012 - More patients seen on time in emergency department
Tasmania. Department of Health & Human Services
2 May 2012 - Campaign debunks gambling myths
The Treasurer handed down the 2011-12 State Budget on 3 May 2012, allocating new funding to a range of policy initiatives. For an outline of Health initiatives, along with details of their costs, download the State Budget Media Releases below.
For further information visit the Victorian State Budget website.
Department of Health Budget Media Releases 2012-13
- Coalition delivers responsible health Budget in challenging times
- Coalition invests $60 million in cancer research
- Support for senior Victorians in responsible Budget
Western Australia. Department of Health
- 4 May 2012 - Minister for Health: Finding an after-hours GP made easy
- 4 May 2012 - Barnett, Morton - Broome Mental Health Unit opened
- 1 May 2012 - Minister for Mental Health: Synthetic cannabis banned across Australia
New Zealand. Ministry of Health
United Kingdom. Department of Health
Have your say on long term conditions strategy - The Department of Health is asking people to comment on what should be covered by the cross-government long term conditions strategy. Read more --> - Have your say on long term conditions strategy
Don Redding blogs on importance of patient voices for long-term conditions strategy - Don Redding, Director of Policy at National Voices has written a blog for the Department of Health's new long term conditions strategy site. Read more --> – Don Redding blogs on importance of patient voices for long term conditions strategy
Couple talk about living and caring with long term conditions - Di Hopkins and Jeff Hopkins have both written blogs for the Department of Health's new long term conditions strategy site. Read more --> – Couple talk about living and caring with long term conditions
PM's challenge on dementia – driving improvements in health and care - In this video blog Professor Alistair Burns, National Clinical Director for Dementia talks about the five areas thought to be particularly important in driving improvements in health and care. Read more --> – PM's challenge on dementia – driving improvements in health and care
Non-commercial partners needed to support healthy pregnancy marketing campaign - The Department of Health is developing the next phase of the Start4Life social marketing programme with a view to launching a new campaign later this year. Read more --> – Non-commercial partners needed to support healthy pregnancy marketing campaign
300 former child migrants reunited with their families - Almost 300 former child migrants have been reunited with their families in the UK thanks to the Ł6m Family Restoration Fund. Read more --> – 300 former child migrants reunited with their families
More stakeholders meet to discuss long term conditions strategy - On 26 April the Department of Health met with another group of stakeholders to gather views on the long term conditions strategy it is drafting. Read more --> – More stakeholders meet to discuss long term conditions strategy
Canada. Health Canada
Australian Medical Association
AMA Annual Report 2011 - This publication reports on the operations of the Australian Medical Association for the year ended 31 December 2011.
Submission: Elective surgery urgency categories - national definitions - The AMA submission to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons highlights that: urgency categories should facilitate patients being prioritised for surgery fairly and equitably; category definitions should take account of all the factors relevant to a patient's requirement for surgery; the primary driver for surgeons to categorise elective surgery will always be clinical urgency; and elective surgery waiting time should be counted from the time the patient is referred by a general practitioner to a surgeon for assessment until the time surgery is performed. Read more
AMA welcomes further steps towards a National Disability Insurance Scheme - The AMA welcomes the Prime Minister's announcement that the first stage of the National Disability Insurance Scheme will commence from July next year. AMA President, Dr Steve Hambleton said today that the AMA has been pushing for a national long-term care scheme for the severely disabled since 2003. Read more
Canadian Medical Association
26 April 2012 - New credential certifying MDs' leadership skills proving popular
19 April 2012 - New institute will move MD health issues to centre stage
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