Welcome to Healthfiles.

The only certainty about predicting the future is that you are bound to get it wrong – more or less.

And let's not get into known unknowns.

Who would have thought only a few years ago we would be 3D printing body parts, adopting telemedicine as part of standard medical practice and seeing our doctor online?

We were very pleased to welcome Dr Jon Field as our guest speaker at a boardroom lunch last week.

Jon is the driving force behind Docto – the world's first virtual hospital, where patients step into a non-terrestrial hospital environment and are seen by the appropriate specialist as part of a collaborative team.

And so, this month our feature articles focus on this brave new digital world full of new opportunities and new risks. But none that can’t be handled by Jon and others leading the charge.


Rob Samut | Health Law Partner
+61 7 3231 6326



Privacy is the governing framework which controls access to the collection and use of a persons personal information. Many, arguably most Australians are uncomfortable with the thought of their private information, including their health records, falling into the hands of others without their consent. Read more.


Recent US data suggests that in the next five years cyberattacks will cost the US hospital system $305 billion, with as many as 1 in 13 patients having personal information stolen from healthcare records during that time.  Why such an interest in health records? Read more.


The Health (Abortion Law Reform) Amendment Bill 2016 Qld (the second Bill) was introduced into the Queensland Parliament on 17 August 2016 by Mr Rob Pyne, the Member for Cairns. Parliament has referred the Bill to the Health, Communities, Disability Services and Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Committee (the Committee). Read more.



Medical Board of Australia v Dr Wong [2016] QCAT 112 (Delivered on 1 April 2016)

In an earlier decision of the Medical Board of Australia v Wong [2015] QCAT 439, the Tribunal considered whether Dr Wong’s registration should be cancelled.  Dr Wong ceased practice in or about 24 August 2012 voluntarily and immediately having being charged with 27 counts of sexual assault in relation to 19 complainants.  All but one of the complainants were patients of Dr Wong.  The other was an employee of the practice in which he worked. Read more.

Medical Board of Australia v Shah [2016] QCAT 158 (Delivered on 22 March 2016)

Allegations of professional misconduct. Consideration of appropriate sanction for breaches of the Code of Conduct for Doctors in Australia and Queensland Health Information Policy without reasonable justification. Read more.

Lee v Medical Board of Australia (No 2) [2016] QCAT 321 (Delivered on 26 August 2016)

On 19 July 2013, the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) resolved to take immediate action against Dr Lee and impose conditions on his registration (the original decision).  On 2 September 2015, AHPRA exercised its power pursuant to Section 126 of the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law Act 2009 (Qld) (National Law) to impose additional conditions on Dr Lee (the amended decision). Read more.



Coronial Inquest Summary - Michael Calder

Mr Calder, aged 33, died four days after his admission on 8 July 2014 to Holy Sprit Northside Private Hospital (“Holy Spirit”) for treatment of headache pain.  His treating physician was unaware that Mr Calder had previously been treated for Obstructive Sleep Apnoea at the Holy Spirit.
Read more.

Coronial Inquest into the deal of Mark Anthony Plumb

On 19 September 2014, Mark Plumb, aged 76, attended the Friendly Society Private Hospital for an elective procedure with Dr Pitre Anderson for an endoscopy (‘ERCP’), sphincterotomy and gall stone extraction. Following the surgery, Mr Plumb began to experience severe pain in his abdomen. A CT scan later that evening indicated that his bile duct may have been perforated during the surgery. A conservative management plan was implemented by Dr Anderson.
Read more.

Investigation into the deal of SJM

SJM, aged 57, had a history of alcohol and substance abuse, type 2 diabetes, gout, insomnia, anxiety and depression. His general practitioner of thirteen years, Dr JB, had a history of treating SJM for these conditions using a combination of prescription medication, including narcotics.  Dr JB had a documented history of concerns regarding SJM’s substance abuse. They were also personal friends. 
Read more.