In 2013 the Queensland Audit Office (QAO) conducted a performance audit of the right of private practice arrangements for doctors at Queensland’s Hospital and Health Services (HSSs). In January 2014, at the conclusion of that audit, the QAO referred a copy of its second report to the Crime and Corruption Commission (CCC) to consider whether any of the information revealed during the audit raised a suspicion of official misconduct by Senior Medical Officers (SMOs).
The two main areas of concern identified were workplace attendance and treatment and billing practices. Regarding workplace attendance, the CCC wrote to each of the HHSs, adopting the recommendation made by the QAO that the HHSs investigate the extent of unrecorded leave and undertake appropriate remedial action.
The CCC engaged the Hon. Stanley Jones AO QC — a retired Supreme Court Justice — to independently review a wide range of information provided by the QAO, assess the allegations, and advise whether investigation by the CCC was warranted.
Based on his advice, the CCC did not proceed to investigate this matter. In accordance with its legislation, it referred information in relation to two practitioners to the relevant Hospital and Health Services, and took no further action with respect to the remaining practitioners.