Contact between Private Health Insurance companies or their representatives and the Department of Health since 7th September 2014

Tim Senior made this Freedom of Information request to Department of Health

The request was refused by Department of Health.

From: Tim Senior

Delivered

Dear Department of Health,

I am writing to submit an Freedom of Information Request. Please could you supply any correspondence (e-mails or paper-based), and notes and/or minutes of any meetings held, and the diary of the Minister or his delegates for meetings between the Department of Health and any health funds registered under the Private Health Insurance Act 2007, or their representatives.

This information is in the public interest, as the minister is on record as saying that Private Health Insurers should be more involved in health care, including primary care. There is currently a pilot program ongoing between the Independent Practitioner Network and Medibank Private, and news reports that the Minister is going to ask Private Health Insurance Companies to take on the role of Primary Health Networks to replace Medicare Locals. The decisions made by the Minister have clear commercial implications for Private Health Insurance Companies, and so there is a clear public interest in seeing the process by which these decisions are being made

Yours faithfully,

Dr Tim Senior

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From: Tim Senior

Delivered

Dear Department of Health,

Correction: The correct date in my FOI request is 7th September 2013, not 7th September 2014.

Yours faithfully,

Tim Senior

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Department of Health


Attachment Acknowledgment 044 1415 D14 2155783.PDF.pdf
66K Download View as HTML


Dear Dr Senior

Please see attached correspondence in relation to your FOI request to the
Department of Health.

Kind regards

FOI Officer
Legal Services Branch
Department of Health
Phone: (02) 6289  1666
GPO Box 9848, Canberra  ACT  2601 | MDP 350
 

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Department of Health


Attachment Notice of Consultation 044 1415 D14 2205048.PDF.pdf
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Dear Dr Senior

Please see attached correspondence in relation to your FOI request to the
Department of Health.

Kind regards

FOI Officer
Information Law Section| Legal Services Branch
Department of Health
Phone: (02) 6289  1718
GPO Box 9848, Canberra  ACT  2601 | MDP 350

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Tim Senior left an annotation ()

So, the Department of Health have refused the request on the grounds of a large workload to go through all contacts.

It does show a huge amount of contact between private health and the department, which you might expect - which other department would they go to?

Any suggestions as to whether there is a way of finding out about contact specifically lobbying on policy? Or is there a way of simplifying the request - eg just for the minister's diary.

I'd very much appreciate any advice or comments from people out there!

Tim

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Henare Degan left an annotation ()

What about restricting it to 1 of the 34 organisations to start with?

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Charmaine Crowe left an annotation ()

Hey Tim

I suggest you renegotiate the parameters of the request. Perhaps restrict the correspondence to one of the major lobbyists (for example, Private Healthcare Australia). If you can, identify an issue that you would like correspondence on (for example, the private health insurance rebate).

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Department of Health

Dear Dr Senior

Following from our conversation yesterday, I am writing to confirm that we
agreed to extend the consultation period with regard to your request by an
additional 14 days.  The consultation period will now end at 5pm Monday 13
October 2014.

As discussed, an officer from the Department will be in contact with you
shortly to discuss your request, however should you have any questions I
can be contacted on the details below.

Kind regards
rowena

FOI Officer
Legal Services Branch
Department of Health
Phone: (02) 6289  1666
email: [Health request email]
GPO Box 9848, Canberra  ACT  2601 | MDP 350

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Tim Senior left an annotation ()

I was contacted by phone by the Department of Health. The FoI person allocated to this request is now unavailable and so they are reallocating the request to someone else. I will be given an extra 2 weeks for the clarification.

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From: Tim Senior

Delivered

Dear Department of Health,

Thank you for your time in discussing this request on the phone.

As we discussed, I wish to clarify my request.

I would like to see copies of minutes, notes and correspondence specifically relating to Private Health Insurance companies or their representatives, as defined previously, and the Minister or Department of Health officials relating to either:
1. The trial of Medibank Private and the Independent Practitioner Network working together to provide beneficial access to care for Medibank Private members attending those services; or
2. Discussions relating to the entry of Private Health Insurance companies into the provision or funding of General Practice services (as they would be defined for the purposes of the Medicare Benefits Schedule).

I hope this clarifies my request.

I look forward to hearing from you.
Yours faithfully,

Tim Senior

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Department of Health

Dear Dr Senior

Thank you for your correspondence of 12 October 2014, clarifying your
Freedom of Information request. Noting that your request involves
consulting multiple areas within the Department, we are still determining
the number of documents which may fall within the scope of your request.
Pursuant to section 15AA of the Freedom of Information Act 1982, I seek
your written agreement to extend the processing period by 30 days. Subject
to your agreement, the Department will notify the Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner of this extension.

I will endeavour to provide you with further information related to your
request as soon as practical.

Kind regards

Charine Bennett
A/g FOI Coordinator
Information Law Section| Legal Services Branch
Department of Health
Phone: (02) 6289  1666
GPO Box 9848, Canberra  ACT  2601 | MDP 350

Please note that this email and attachments may contain confidential or
legally privileged information.  Please consult with the Legal Services
Branch before disclosing any part of this email, or attachment, outside
the Department.  If you receive this email in error, please delete it and
contact the sender immediately.

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From: Tim Senior

Delivered

Dear Department of Health,

Thank you for your efforts in tracking down the information I requested. I am happy to extend the processing period by 30 days.

Yours faithfully,

Tim Senior

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Department of Health

Thanks very much for your response. On this basis the due date for a
decision on your request will now be 21 November 2014.

Kind regards

Charine bennett

From:        Tim Senior <[FOI #750 email]>
To:        FOI@health.gov.au,
Date:        20/10/2014 15:57
Subject:        Re: 044-1415 Update and request for further time to deal
with your FOI request [SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]

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Please use this email address for all replies to this request:
[FOI #750 email]

Write your response as plain text. Only send PDF documents as a last
resort. Government guidelines make it clear that PDF is not an acceptable
format for you to use in the delivery of government information.
[1]https://www.righttoknow.org.au/help/offi...

This request is being made by an individual using the Right to Know
website. The unique email address provided by the service for this request
satisfies s.15(2)(c) of the Freedom of Information Act.

Disclaimer: This message and any reply that you make will be published on
the internet. Our privacy and copyright policies:
[2]https://www.righttoknow.org.au/help/offi...

If you find this service useful as an FOI officer, please ask your web
manager to link to us from your organisation's FOI page.

-------------------------------------------------------------------

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Important: This transmission is intended only for the use of the
addressee and may contain confidential or legally privileged information.
If you are not the intended recipient, you are notified that any use or
dissemination of this communication is strictly prohibited. If you receive
this transmission in error please notify the author immediately and delete
all copies of this transmission."

References

Visible links
1. https://www.righttoknow.org.au/help/offi...
2. https://www.righttoknow.org.au/help/offi...

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Tim Senior left an annotation ()

I have agreed to an extension until the 21st November for the information

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Department of Health


Attachment Charges letter 044 1415 D14 2779399.PDF.pdf
1.6M Download View as HTML


Dear Dr Senior

Please see attached correspondence in relation to your FOI request to the
Department of Health.

Kind regards

FOI Officer
Information Law Section| Legal Services Branch
Department of Health
Phone: (02) 6289  1666
GPO Box 9848, Canberra  ACT  2601 | MDP 350

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Department of Health


Attachment Deemed withdrawal notice 044 1415.pdf
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Dear Dr Senior

Please see attached correspondence in relation to your FOI request to the
Department of Health.

Kind regards

FOI Officer
FOI Unit / Information Law Section / Legal Services Branch
Department of Health
' Phone: (02) 6289 1666| 6  Fax: (02) 6289 5601
* GPO Box 9848 Canberra ACT 2601 / MDP 350

Please note that this email and attachments may contain confidential or
legally privileged information.  Please consult with the Legal Services
Branch before disclosing any part of this email, or attachment, outside
the Department.  If you receive this email in error, please delete it and
contact the sender immediately.

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Things to do with this request

Anyone:
Department of Health only: