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Medico-Legal & Health Law: Expert practice - Parts A & B

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Medico-Legal & Health Law: Expert practice - Parts A & B

Date & TimeTBC
Format Conference, Webcast





CPD Units 6
  • Ethics & Professional Responsibility
  • Professional Skills
  • Practice Management & Business Skills
  • Substantive Law
Venue LIV, Level 13, 140 William Street, Melbourne View Map

Draw on the knowledge of industry experts at this full-day conference designed for medico-legal and health law practitioners. Stay informed of key developments in these practice areas and receive valuable insights and practical advice.

Parts A and B can also be booked separately.

Part A (9AM–1.30PM) delivers your 1 mandatory ethics point with informative panel discussion. You’ll also receive an informative update from the Coroner’s Court, and be treated to an in-depth analysis of the My Health Record initiative. View and register.

Part B (12.30–5PM) updates you on the latest case law developments, offers vital information about the new Safer Care Victoria initiative, and brings you up to date with the evolution of medical autonomy-related legislation in Victoria. View and register.

Further details below.

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Program Overview

  • Medico-Legal and Health Law: Expert practice - Tuesday 19 Feb
    • 8:30 AM Registration
    • 9:00 AM Opening and Welcome
    • 9:05 AM Insights from the Coroners Court

      In her keynote presentation, Coroner Paresa Antoniadis Spanos will discuss recent cases and current issues that may impact your medico-legal practice.

      Speaker: Coroner Spanos, Coroners Court of Victoria

    • 10:05 AM Morning Tea
    • 10:30 AM My Health Record: How we got here, and where we are heading

      The Australian Digital Health Agency’s My Health Record initiative is infamous for its controversial introduction of medical record keeping and ensuing data privacy concerns for Australians who access healthcare. This session will address key topics of concern and discuss how this tool affects your clients.

      Topics will include:

      • What laws and regulations mandate how the My Health Record tool works
      • My Health Record’s potential to create new and different medical records, and consequently, new and different evidence
      • Recent controversies and how they have been resolved
      • Privacy and security ramifications
      • Forensic ramifications and evidentiary implications

      Speaker: Bob Milstein, Principal, Milstein and Associates

    • 11:30 AM Ethical Considerations for Medico-Legal and Health Lawyers: Panel session

      Hear our expert panel discuss challenging ethical issues commonly faced by medico-legal practitioners during this interactive session. Our panellists will share real ethical issues they’ve encountered in their practices and how they have resolved them, focusing particularly on how they balance their paramount duty to the court and the administration of justice with their duty to advocate fearlessly for a client.

      Moderator: His Honour Judge O’Neill, County Court of Victoria

      Mette Aiken-Petersen, Ethics & Professional Practice, Law Institute of Victoria
      Sarah McPherson, Head of Claims, Victorian Managed Insurance Agency
      Bree Ridgeway, Solicitor, Pearce Webster Dugdales

    • 12:30 PM Lunch
    • 1:30 PM Medical Treatment Decision-Making and Voluntary Assisted Dying: Experiences to date and those still to come

      In this session, our knowledgeable presenter will provide an overview of advanced care options, shedding light on the hierarchy of medical decisions makers while outlining past applications of the MTPD Act. Gain insight into how doctors intend to implement the VAD Act mid-2019, as well as religious and demographic concerns that may arise with medical treatment decision-making matters.

      Speaker: Emily Hart, Senior Associate, Medical Negligence Department, Maurice Blackburn

    • 2:30 PM The Latest Happenings in Medico-Legal and Health Case Law

      Join our experienced presenter as she recounts recent significant cases and trends in medico-legal and health law in the last twelve months that will be of relevance to your practice.

      Speaker: Megan Fitzgerald, Barrister, Victorian Bar

    • 3:30 PM Afternoon Tea
    • 4:00 PM Safer Care Victoria and the Mission to Improve Victorian Healthcare Outcomes

      Hear Euan Wallace, CEO of Safer Care Victoria, speak about the purpose, guiding principles, and strategic plan for this critical agency as it aims to lead improvements in clinical governance and strives towards implementing quality and safety improvements across the Victorian healthcare system.

      Speaker: Professor Euan Wallace, CEO, Safer Care Victoria

    • 5:00 PM Close

Further Details

  • Full Description

    Draw on the knowledge of industry experts at this full-day conference designed for medico-legal and health law practitioners. Stay informed of key developments in these practice areas and receive valuable insights and practical advice.

    Main topics:

    Part A:

    • Insights from the Coroner’s Court of Victoria
    • My Health Record in the medico-legal world
    • Key ethical considerations


    Part B:

    • Analysis of the Voluntary Assisted Dying Act 2017 (Vic) and Medical Treatment Planning and Decisions Act 2016 (Vic)
    • Recent advancements and case law impacting medico-legal practice
    • Safer Care Victoria and efforts being made to improve the quality of clinical governance and patient safety


  • Presenters

    Coroner Spanos, Coroners Court of Victoria. Coroner Spanos completed Arts and Law degrees at the University of Melbourne in 1980. Between 1984 and 1994 she was employed by the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions, first in Trials and Appeals, then as a Medifraud Specialist before becoming Senior Assistant Director in 1989 and heading the Major Fraud and later General Prosecutions Branches.  In 1994 Coroner Spanos was appointed a Magistrate sitting in Melbourne and suburban courts, with periodic appointments to the Children’s Court.  Since 2005, she has worked exclusively as a coroner on a range of coronial investigations, including a number of deaths occurring in a healthcare setting.  From 2005-2013, Coroner Spanos was a member of the Victorian Child Death Review Committee, a multi-disciplinary Ministerial advisory committee reviewing the deaths of children known to DHHS/Child Protection, a function now undertaken by the Child Safety Commission.

    Bob Milstein, Principal, Milstein and Associates. Bob is a lawyer and plain language trainer and document writer. Bob graduated from law school in 1982 and spent several years working in the USA where he was admitted to the New York Bar. In 1984, he returned to Australia to start a legal practice with a focus on medical negligence. With a background in professional medical negligence litigation, Bob has long been aware that clear communication — or its absence — often lies at the heart of legal disputes. This awareness triggered his original interest in plain legal communication. He is Committee member of the Public Liability & Medical Negligence at LIV.

    Mette Aiken-Petersen, Ethics & Professional Practice, Law Institute of Victoria. Mette Aiken-Petersen commenced as Manager, Ethics & Professional Practice at the Law Institute of Victoria in February 2018. Prior to joining the LIV, Mette was an investigator at the Victorian Legal Services Board & Commissioner and spent 16 years with Slater & Gordon Lawyers in a variety of roles including Professional Standards Lawyer, Knowledge Manager and National New Client Services Manager. Mette has experience in general practice in both the private sector and not for profits, and spent two years working in Family Law in London as a paralegal. 

    Sarah McPherson, Head of Claims, Victorian Managed Insurance Agency. Sarah McPherson graduated from Monash University with a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Arts and was admitted to practice in 1998.  Sarah joined VMIA in 2015, bringing a wealth of experience from her more than 17 years of experience as an insurance lawyer including medical indemnity defence litigation.  VMIA is the largest medical indemnity insurer in Australia.  Sarah is the Head of Claims across all VMIA claims portfolios.

    Bree Ridgeway, Solicitor, Pearce Webster Dugdales.

    Emily Hart, Senior Associate, Medical Negligence Department, Maurice Blackburn. Emily Hart is a Senior Associate in Maurice Blackburn’s medical negligence department in Melbourne, and a Law Institute of Victoria personal injury accredited specialist. She is also the first point of contact for many people at The Alfred Hospital through the HeLP clinic, which she helped to establish. Emily graduated with a Bachelor Degree in Arts and Honours in Law in 2007. Within the broad medical negligence field, Emily’s main practice areas are obstetrics, Coronial matters and mental health.

    Megan Fitzgerald, Barrister, Victorian Bar. Megan practices in disciplinary prosecutions and negligence actions relating to medical and legal professionals; inquests and public inquiries acting for bereaved family members, public interest groups and medical professionals; and personal injury actions arising out of medical incidents. Along with appearance work, Megan has a strong practice in drafting and advice work. Megan holds a Graduate Diploma of Health and Medical Law from the University of Melbourne.

    Professor Euan Wallace, CEO, Safer Care Victoria. Professor Euan Wallace AM is the inaugural Chief Executive Officer of Safer Care Victoria, Victoria’s lead agency for quality and safety improvement in healthcare. Professor Wallace is an academic obstetrician and gynaecologist by training. Prior to his appointment to Safer Care Victoria, Professor Wallace was the Director of the Women’s Health Program at Monash Health, Victoria’s largest women’s health service. In that role, he established a clinical governance framework to drive and embed a culture of healthcare improvement. Professor Wallace is also the Carl Wood Professor and Head of Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Monash University where he leads a perinatal medicine research group. His research interests are in fetal development, maternal health, stem cell biology and patient safety.



  • Learning Outcomes

    By attending this conference, you will:

    • Become better equipped to confidently advise clients on sensitive medical treatment and end-of-life matters
    • Gain a stronger understanding of how the My Health Record resource can impact your practice
    • Discover how to best incorporate recent developments in medico-legal and health law to your practice