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Sunday Telegraph: Understates the Seriousness of Crime.

The Sunday Telegraph's article entitled "Law to catch dodgy doctors" by Linda Silmalis on March 02, 2008 can be read in full below or online at
http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/story/0,22049,23303715-5001021,00.html

The Sunday Telegraph must think their readers are terminally dumbed down.

On 2 March its writer, Linda Silmalis announced:

"DOCTORS will be required by law to dob in their dodgy colleagues in an attempt to prevent a repeat of the Butcher of Bega.. "

This seems to turn a blind eye to the laws of the land - the laws to protect us are already in place, and, indeed have been in place for around a hundred years.

See Crimes Act 1900 which includes Section 32 Reckless grievous bodily harm or wounding

"Section 32 Reckless grievous bodily harm or wounding

"(1) Reckless grievous bodily harm-in company

A person who, in the company of another person or persons, recklessly causes grievous bodily harm to any person is guilty of an offence.

Maximum penalty: Imprisonment for 14 years.

"(2) Reckless grievous bodily harm

A person who recklessly causes grievous bodily harm to any person is guilty of an offence.

Maximum penalty: Imprisonment for 10 years.

"(3) Reckless wounding-in company

A person who, in the company of another person or persons, recklessly wounds any person is guilty of an offence.

Maximum penalty: Imprisonment for 10 years.

"(4) Reckless wounding

A person who recklessly wounds any person is guilty of an offence.

Maximum penalty: Imprisonment for 7 years. …".

We the public are entitled to question and demand appropriate action against those who knew.

Seemingly a good place to start is again the Crimes Act 1900 Part 9 Abettors and accessories

"Part 9 Abettors and accessories

"345 Principals in the second degree-how tried and punished

"Every principal in the second degree in any serious indictable offence shall be liable to the same punishment to which the person would have been liable had the person been the principal in the first degree.

"346 Accessories before the fact-how tried and punished

" Every accessory before the fact to a serious indictable offence may be indicted, convicted, and sentenced, either before or after the trial of the principal offender, or together with the principal offender, or indicted, convicted, and sentenced, as a principal in the offence, and shall be liable in either case to the same punishment to which the person would have been liable had the person been the principal offender, whether the principal offender has been tried or not, or is amenable to justice or not.

"347 Accessories after the fact-how tried and punished

" Every accessory after the fact to a serious indictable offence may be indicted, convicted, and sentenced as such accessory, either before, or together with, or after the trial of the principal offender, whether the principal offender has been previously tried or not, or is amenable to justice or not…"

See this at http://www.legislation.nsw.gov.au/viewtop/inforce/act+40+1900+FIRST+0+N

The Tele freely admits that the organization Health Care Complaints Commission was notified in 1994!

One would think that the Tele would know that probably at various times many other, seemingly also complicit personnel were advised - people including politicians, public servants in offices including Premiers Office, Ombudsman's Office, ICAC, Attorney General's Office and of course our Prime Minister's office and his Attorney General's Office.

The Tele chose to use the phrase "dob in". Mild words indeed. Evidently the Tele would classify as "dobbers" the people who report murders, fraudsters, and pedophiles, and other ciminals

If anyone wonders where our public money goes, it may be considered that corrupt officials freely spend their budget to pay a lot of people to participate on years of cover-ups, or worse.

If anyone wonders what happens to the people who attempt to bring public wrong-doing to account we can read what has been dished out to the public servants who reported wrongdoing, and paid the price.

I do not see the Tele taking up the banner on behalf of the whistleblowers wrecked by government department officers, and this includes the infamous HealthQuest.


Complete article:

DOCTORS will be required by law to dob in their dodgy colleagues in an attempt to prevent a repeat of the Butcher of Bega.

The Sunday Telegraph can reveal the State Government will amend the Medical Practice Amendment Bill, which is already before parliament, to accommodate mandatory reporting in NSW hospitals.

The move follows the stories of hundreds of women about deregistered former doctor, Graeme Reeves, who is alleged to have mutilated them while practising at Bega and Pambula on the NSW South Coast.

The legislation will mean doctors will be required by law to report on their colleagues if they suspect their peers of having: committed sexual abuse; engaged in drug or alcohol abuse, or engaged in gross misconduct .

NSW Health Minister Reba Meagher said it was clear the laws needed changing.

"I think the community wants more assurance that if a doctor is suspected of gross negligence or serious misconduct they will be reported and they will face the consequences,'' she said.

"Serious matters need to be brought to light and they need to be investigated. This is why we will create a legal obligation to ensure this happens.''

Ms Meagher said the bill would also force the professional disciplinary bodies such as the NSW Medical Board, the Health Care Complaints Commission (HCCC) and the NSW Medical Tribunal to take into account a doctor's history of complaints when determining what prosecution and disciplinary decisions were necessary.

Under existing laws, the individual bodies focused on resolving individual complaints rather than looking at a doctor's history.

"We have seen recently that cases arise where a doctor has been subject to a number of complaints going back over many years, complaints which show a pattern of poor standards or inappropriate conduct,'' Ms Meagher said.

"The current legislation focuses on resolution and investigation of complaints on a one by one, case by case, basis rather than looking at a pattern of poor standards or inappropriate conduct.''

The bill would also make it easier for the NSW Medical Board to immediately suspend the registration of a doctor if it was believed a person's life was in danger.

Dr Reeves is alleged to have performed unnecessary and sometimes horrific gynaecological procedures over several months in 2002. Five of Dr Reeves' alleged victims visited NSW Parliament House last week to question why he was able to practise, despite a ban.

Ms Meagher has hinted at the State Government compensating the women if it was proven there had been a failing in the system. However, the State Government would first await the completion of the police inquiry, she said.

Since Friday, the HCCC has received 12 phone calls and four written complaints from women who had been patients of Dr Reeves. The complaints were in addition to 27 received over the past few years.

Ms Meagher apologised to the women who had come forward, and praised them for their courage.

"To the women who have come forward, I commend you for your courage and I am sorry to all of you for the awful experiences you suffered at the hands of someone who acted so despicably,'' Ms Meagher said.

Liberal MP for Bega Andrew Constance said the State Government had yet to explain to the women how Dr Reeves had come to be employed.

Mr Constance, who called for an urgent investigation into Dr Reeves in a speech to parliament made in September last year, said he had been approached by nine women with allegations of negligence against Dr Reeves, including three on Friday.

"I would have liked to have seen an independent inquiry into this issue to find out what the bureaucrats knew,'' he said.

"The women who have bravely come forward on this issue just want answers and to see some sort of justice.''

A telephone counselling and support service has been established by NSW Health to support former patients of Dr Reeves.

The State Government has also instructed NSW Health to ensure any medical negligence claims are promptly evaluated prior to the commencement of any formal legal proceedings.