The Legislative Assembly’s Standing Committee on Health, Ageing and Community Services (the Committee) welcomes late submissions to its inquiry into maternity services from interested participants. The Inquiry’s terms of reference (T of R) are available on the Committee’s inquiry homepage at: https://www.parliament.act.gov.au/in-committees/standing-committees-current-assembly/standing-committee-on-health,-ageing-and-community-services/Inquiry-into-the-Maternity-Services-in-the-ACT. Submissions should address some or all of the T of R. The Committee asks that interested participants please contact the Committee Secretariat at LACommitteeHACS@parliament.act.gov.au to express their interest in making a late submission.
The Committee announced that it had resolved to inquire into maternity services in the ACT on 18 September 2018. At that time, ‘the Committee emphasised that the inquiry was important—pregnancy, childbirth and early parenting are an important and significant time for mothers, fathers and their families. It is vital that the services that support this significant time and the experiences that accompany pregnancy and childbirth should, in our community, be of the highest quality. The Committee also welcomed hearing from the community, as well as the health sector, and other interested stakeholders, about what is working well in the delivery of maternity services in the ACT, together with what may need to be improved’, the Committee Chair, Ms Bec Cody MLA said.
The Chair further said, ‘the Committee called for submissions to its inquiry in September 2018 and also extended the formal deadline for receipt of submissions. The Committee encouraged interested individuals and key stakeholder groups and organisations to make a written submission to this important inquiry. In response to direct contact from interested individuals and organisations, the Committee has also considered requests for, and taken late submissions to its inquiry’.
‘The Committee widely advertised its call for submissions using a range of communication channels—including, via a media invite and release; an announcement in the ACT Legislative Assembly, advertising in the Canberra Times, via the ACT Legislative Assembly website; and via a range of social media communication channels. The Committee also directly invited key stakeholders, interest groups and organisations, with an interest in the Inquiry, to make written submissions’, Ms Cody added.
In its decision to inquire into maternity services, the Chair said ‘the Committee acknowledged that there is a range of maternity care models available in the ACT. The Committee also observed that there is an increasing demand for continuous care across the maternity pathway as it concerns different care models and wants to ensure that these respective pathways are working well as it concerns maternity services available within the ACT’.
To date, the Committee has received over fifty submissions to its inquiry and thanks all those submitters and witnesses who have contributed to its inquiry its date. The Committee acknowledges that for many participants in its inquiry they are sharing deeply personal experiences and that contemplating and preparing submissions would not have been easy. The Committee thanks all inquiry participants to date for taking the time and personal energy to contribute to an inquiry of this nature.
The Committee welcomes late submissions to its inquiry from interested individuals and organisations. The Committee notes that it has a broad public interest mandate and is not in a position to determine the rights and wrongs of individual cases. The Committee process is not a forum to resolve issues pertaining solely to individual cases or grievances but is a forum to explore the general matters of principle, policy or public administration relevant to the terms of reference.
Submissions should include your full name, postal address, email address and telephone number. Electronic lodgement is preferred and can be sent to: LACommitteeHACS@parliament.act.gov.au. Further information on how to lodge a submission is available at: https://www.parliament.act.gov.au/in-committees/Getting-involved.
Further information on the Inquiry is available at: https://www.parliament.act.gov.au/in-committees/standing-committees-current-assembly/standing-committee-on-health,-ageing-and-community-services/Inquiry-into-the-Maternity-Services-in-the-ACT.
Mrs Vicki Dunne MLA
(for comment on the inquiry)
(02) 620 50283
Dr Andréa Cullen
(for further information)
(02) 620 50136