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Medical gas installation bill passes NSW upper house

Deborah Knight
Article image for Medical gas installation bill passes NSW upper house

The orchestrator of a bill for medical gas installation is hopeful it will pass parliament after it made it through the upper house.

In 2016 at Bankstown-Lidcombe Hospital nitrous oxide was confused for oxygen and administered to two newborns. John Ghanem died, and Amelia Khan was left with lifelong brain damage after the mix-up.

Better Regulation Minister Kevin Anderson has previously promised to use changes to existing laws to require those installing medical gas to be licensed, but Labor is trying to push through a bill to solve the problem.

Mr Anderson said “the NSW Government agrees with the sentiment” of Labor’s bill, but it “lacks the detail necessary” (full statement below).

NSW Labor MP Mark Buttigieg told Deborah Knight the government initially indicated it would oppose the bill, but some MPs have reached out to him to discuss the proposal.

“I’m optimistic they may have had a change of heart.

“It will now go to the lower house, where the government has the numbers and could kick it into the gutter, obviously, if they wanted to.”

Click PLAY below to hear the full interview

Full statement from Minister for Better Regulation Kevin Anderson:

The NSW Government agrees with the sentiment of the Private Member’s Bill and has not opposed it in the Upper House.

However, the opposition has not consulted with key stakeholders, and the Bill lacks the detail necessary to ensure a comprehensive and effective regulatory regime. Furthermore the Bill, if passed, will not commence for at least six months.

Yesterday I introduced the Gas Legislation Amendment Bill 2020 to the Legislative Assembly, which has been approved by the Governor and will deliver a robust, effective and comprehensive regime by November 1. We will work closely in consultation with the industry to implement the changes.


Image: Getty

Deborah Knight