Overhauling child safety at the Launceston General Hospital is underway, following damning evidence at the sex abuse Commission of Inquiry.
Having heard harrowing stories about LGH paedophile nurse James Griffin and the systemic failures that kept him in the job for years, the state government isn’t waiting until the high-powered Commission hands down its findings next year.
Two independent Co-Chairs have been appointed to a freshly announced Child Safe Governance Review of the hospital, reporting back in November.
Professor Debora Picone AO and Adjunct Professor Karen Crawshaw PSM will head up the government advisory panel, selecting the other experts such as child safety experts, unions and health staff.
“While we look forward to the recommendations next year from the Commission of Inquiry, we will not be waiting to take action where it is clear it is needed now. This Review is starting immediately and is about making important and necessary change, through the lens of safeguarding children,” Premier Jeremy Rockliff said.
Professor Picone is the CEO of the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care, a position she has held since 2012.
Before that she was the NSW Health Director-General from 2007-2011.
In her current role, Professor Picone has led the development and implementation of a series of national system-wide safety and quality programs.
Adjunct Professor Crawshaw was NSW Health’s Director Legal and General Counsel for 17 years and also worked as Deputy Secretary Governance, Workforce and Corporate until 2017, with responsibility for a range of policy areas including health system governance, regulation, legal services, workplace relations and human resources.
Adjunct Professor Crawshaw had key responsibilities for implementing NSW Health’s response to the Garling Inquiry into Acute Care Services and the Wood Royal Commission reference which resulted in major reforms of the NSW child protection system.
She continues to provide strategic policy and legal advice to governments and health organisations, including state health departments and the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care and has just completed her third term as a member of the Australian Health Practitioner Regulatory Agency’s Governance body (AHPRA).
“There is nothing more important than keeping children safe. We are listening and acting now to ensure past wrongs are never repeated,” Premier Rockliff said.
“The advice of the Governance Advisory Panel is critical to ensure that our organisational approach is child-safe, contemporary and leading to help rebuild the trust and confidence of the Launceston community to continue to seek high quality and safe health care,” Health Secretary Katherine Morgan-Wicks said.