Public comment

Call for comments on health regulation reforms

The Victorian government is proposing reforms to improve the regulatory tools available under health portfolio legislation. This includes improving the compliance and enforcement tools for regulating cooling tower and water delivery systems under the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008.

In December 2023, the Minister for Health announced the establishment of the Health Regulator – a new branch of the department that will have responsibility for most of the department’s existing areas of regulatory responsibility. The Health Regulator was formally established in February 2024 following a department restructure.

The government notes, however, that health portfolio acts have not kept pace with modern best practice regulatory design and do not include adequate mid-range compliance and enforcement tools.

The reforms aim to address these issues by introducing tools that enable graduated, risk-based and proportionate regulation. This includes consistent powers to issue infringement notices, issue improvement and prohibition notices, accept enforceable undertakings, and require the provision of information or documents to support compliance monitoring.

Amendments are proposed to the Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Act 1981 (DPCS Act), the Health Services Act 1988, the Non-Emergency Patient Transport and First Aid Services Act 2003 (NEPTFAS Act), the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008 (PHW Act), the Radiation Act 2005, and the Safe Drinking Water Act 2003.

The department has released a consultation paper to seek stakeholder views, build understanding of the reforms, and support their implementation.

Submissions will be accepted until midnight May 31, 2024.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.