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Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act 2003

3: Competence, fitness to practise, and quality assurance

53   Interpretation

    53 Interpretation

  (1)  In sections 52 to 63, unless the context otherwise requires,---

health practitioner    means,---

      (a)  in the period commencing with the commencement of this section and
ending on the day that is 1 year after the date on which this Act receives the
assent, a registered health professional within the meaning of section 4 of the
Health and Disability Commissioner Act 1994; and

      (b)  after that period, a health practitioner as defined in section 5(1)

investigation    means any of the following:

      (a)  the proceedings of a Royal Commission or a commission of inquiry
appointed by an Order in Council made under the Commissions of Inquiry Act 1908:

      (b)  the proceedings of an inquiry board appointed under the New Zealand
Public Health and Disability Act 2000:

      (c)  an inquiry required by the Director of Mental Health under section
95 of the Mental Health (Compulsory Assessment and Treatment) Act 1992:

      (d)  an inquiry conducted by the Director-General of Health:

      (e)  an inquiry or investigation conducted by the Health and Disability

      (f)  an inquiry conducted by the police

judicial proceeding    means any proceeding that is a judicial proceeding
within the meaning of section 108 of the Crimes Act 1961

Ministerial authority    means an authority given by the Minister under section
61 and for the time being in force

protected quality assurance activity    means a quality assurance activity in
respect of which a notice issued under section
54 is in force when the activity is engaged in

quality assurance activity---

      (a)  means an activity that is undertaken to improve the practices or
competence of 1 or more health practitioners by assessing the health services
performed by those health practitioners (whenever those services are or were
performed); and

      (b)  includes the following acts that are done in the course of, or as a
result of, that activity:

          (i)     the whole or part of any assessment or evaluation:

          (ii)    the whole or part of a study of the incidence or causes of
conditions or circumstances that may affect the quality of health services
performed by 1 or more of those health practitioners:

          (iii)   any preparation for that assessment, evaluation, or study:

          (iv)    making recommendations about the performance of those

          (v)     monitoring the implementation of those recommendations

serious offence    means an offence punishable by imprisonment for a term of 2
years or more

sponsor, in relation to a quality assurance activity, means the person or
association of persons on whose initiative and under whose guidance the
activity is undertaken, continued, or resumed.

  (2)  For the purposes of sections 54 to 63,---

      (a)  information about a matter may not be taken to have become known
merely because of the existence or dissemination of suspicions, allegations, or
rumours about that matter:

      (b)  information may be taken to have become known solely as a result of
a protected quality assurance activity, even though the information was
previously known to a person whose conduct has been or is being investigated by
the persons engaging in the protected quality assurance activity:

      (c)  information is not to be taken to have become known solely as a
result of a protected quality assurance activity if, after a person has been
requested to
respond to, or give evidence in, a judicial proceeding or an investigation, the
information is disclosed in the course of a protected quality assurance
activity wholly or partly for the purpose of preventing its disclosure in the
judicial proceeding or the investigation:

      (d)  information that has become known solely as a result of a protected
quality assurance activity (not being information of the kind described in
paragraph (c)) may be disclosed in a judicial proceeding or an investigation
only if its disclosure is permitted by section 59 or section 60.
Compare: 1995 No 95 s 66

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