Report on doctor rorts sent to CMC

HEALTH Minister Lawrence Springborg has referred a report into the conduct of Queensland doctors which revealed serious issues relating to workplace attendance, treatment and billing practices to the Crime and Misconduct Commission.

Mr Springborg said on today the Right of Private Practice -Senior Medical Officer Conduct report outlined how soft accountability standards had resulted in some doctors exploiting the system.

He strongly reiterated the report should not reflect on the overwhelming majority of senior doctors in the public health system, whose services were appreciated and valued by all.

"It is evidence of a failed unaccountable system that is open to abuse by a minority," he said.

"Some doctors treated private patients in public hospitals despite not having a right to private practice.

"In some cases doctors were double-dipping by performing private work while they were being paid to work in the public system.

"The report also highlighted issues where doctors claimed for work during rostered hours, but were not actually there."

Australian Salaried Medical Officers' Federation Queensland acting president Dr Stephen Morrison said doctors welcomed the investigation and any mismanagement of the Queensland Health system needs to be addressed immediately.

"Of course if there are doctors or managers deliberately rorting the system they should be dealt with by the relevant authorities, but we know the vast majority of doctors working in the public health system are hard-working, honest and committed to the care of their patients," he said.

"Doctors have long said that the current system lacks transparency and clear guidelines are needed to ensure its smooth running."

Dr Morrison said the report should not be used as a convenient excuse to push doctors onto individual contracts.

"We are very happy to work with the government and relevant authorities to get to the bottom of this and to work out how management can be improved in the future."


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