Impaired doctors seeking refuge in WA: minister

Dr Hames, a GP before entering politics, made the decision to exclude WA from the mandatory reporting regime adopted under national laws for medical practitioners in 2010.

As a result, doctors can seek treatment in WA for a condition such as mental illness without the risk of a treating practitioner feeling compelled to notify AHPRA.

Dr Hames said doctors taking advantage of that assurance were being driven by fear.

“It’s all anecdotal... but we do have doctors saying to bodies like the AMA that they have had doctors coming across for treatment, without being more specific than that,” he told the ABC’s Background Briefing program aired at the weekend.