Recent news

14 Aug 2020
On 5 August 2020 the State Government introduced Stage 4 restrictions for businesses located in metropolitan Melbourne. Under the Restricted Activity Directions (Restricted Areas) (No 6) all businesses providing cosmetic treatment services are prohibited from operating until Stage 4 Restrictions are eased. This is because cosmetic treatment services cannot be characterised as Permitted Work Premises in accordance with the Stage 4 Restrictions - Permitted Work Premises List. What this means is that any general health service provider who provides cosmetic treatment services under the Stage 4...
03 Jul 2020
Following a broad-based public consultation involving Victorian health service providers, consumers and other interested organisations and members of the public, complaint handling standards have been made. The complaint handling standards will apply to all health service providers (including registered practitioners and general health service practitioners) in Victoria, replacing the interim standards in Schedule 1 of the Health Complaints Act 2016 . Health Complaints Commissioner Ms Karen Cusack said, “The standards were developed with input from the healthcare sector and the public and...
25 Jun 2020
The Health Complaints Commissioner has commenced an investigation into a Bendigo private skin cancer clinic in relation to concerns raised over the care the clinic provided to patients, specifically around the detection, diagnosis and treatment of skin cancer. To ensure the public’s safety while the investigation is being carried out, Health Complaints Commissioner Karen Cusack has made an interim prohibition order banning Quality Cancer Care of Bendigo from: • advertising, offering or providing, or • causing to be advertised, offered or provided any general health service (paid or otherwise...
12 Jun 2020
The health, safety and welfare of our staff and members of the public who use our services continues to be our primary focus. While there has been an easing of some restrictions by the State Government, my office will continue to operate via remote working arrangements for the foreseeable future. In March 2020, I made the decision to begin working remotely in response to the risk of spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19). This meant closing our office at 570 Bourke Street and for staff to operate remotely, like many other businesses. Despite a significant change in our operational environment, we...
18 May 2020
Following an investigation by the Health Complaints Commissioner, a cosmetic service provider who treated clients in a ‘salon’ at the back of a Springvale Shopping Centre jewellery store, has been issued with a prohibition order permanently banning her from providing any general health services involving cosmetic procedures, including Botox and dermal fillers. Health Complaints Commissioner Karen Cusack said Lee Kim Tan, trading as Sonoun Kimlee Salon in Springvale, is permanently banned from providing general health services, including offering any cosmetic or surgical procedure that...
16 Apr 2020
In response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Victorian government has implemented a range of measures to safeguard the health and wellbeing of the Victorian public. Included among the measures are various restricted activities which prohibit the operation of certain retail facilities, including beauty and personal care services. Health Complaints Commissioner Karen Cusack reminded all affected general health service providers to do the right thing by observing current restrictions that the Victorian government has in place for two reasons. Non-compliance with the Government’s...
09 Apr 2020
The Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner (OVIC) and the Office of the Health Complaints Commissioner (HCC) acknowledge the unprecedented challenges that organisations are facing due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). There is a clear and urgent need to collect, use, and share information to manage the spread of COVID-19. As organisations are likely adapting the way they handle information to deal with the current situation, it is crucial for organisations to understand their privacy obligations. It is important to note that Victoria’s privacy legislation does not prevent...
20 Mar 2020
Due to Coronavirus (COVID-19), I want to share with you the adjustments we have made to the operation of our office. There is significant uncertainty at this time, and the health, safety and welfare of our staff and members of the public who use our services are our primary concern. As a result, and in order to manage any risks, we are adapting our services to the changing needs. From 18 March 2020, our office at 570 Bourke Street Melbourne will be closed to the public. But we are still working and will continue to assist people who are currently accessing our services, and who wish to lodge...
20 Feb 2020
"Karen Cusack, the Victorian Health Complaints Commissioner supports the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency’s (AHPRA) ‘be safe first’ campaign in relation to the risks associated with cosmetic procedures. Cosmetic treatment is a very real concern for the Health Complaints Commissioner, with complaints about unregistered cosmetic treatment providers making up a large number of complaints to the office of the Health Complaints Commissioner. Any campaign that helps consumers to make informed decisions before treatment is a great initiative. The Health Complaints Commissioner...
19 Dec 2019
The Health Complaints Commissioner Karen Cusack has issued Interim Prohibition Orders against Denise Abadee and Craig McDonald of Elsternwick and ‘The Wellbeing Planet’, 7-12 Horne Street Elsternwick while the Commissioner investigates the provision of alcohol and other drug rehabilitation and counselling services at ‘The Wellbeing Planet’. Denise Abadee, Craig McDonald and ‘The Wellbeing Planet’ have been temporarily banned from advertising, offering or providing any general health services, including, but not limited to, the treatment of addiction to alcohol and other drugs, while the...