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Bundaberg vet to face charges relating to handling of Hendra

Three Queensland vets are being prosecuted by Workplace Health and Safety over how they handled cases of Hendra virus in horses.
Three Queensland vets are being prosecuted by Workplace Health and Safety over how they handled cases of Hendra virus in horses.

BUNDABERG vet Luke Annetts of Vetcross is one of the first veterinarians in Queensland to be prosecuted under the Workplace Health and Safety Act 2011.

Dr Annetts will face the Bundaberg Magistrates Court next month following a complaint involving potential exposure to Hendra virus risks.

Mr Annetts is one of three Queensland vets preparing to face court under the act, including Matthew Morahan from Brisbane and Janine Dwyer from the Gold Coast.

A spokesman from the Office of Industrial Relations said all "are in the early stages of proceedings".'

The NewsMail asked the Office of Industrial Relations what the circumstances were relating to Dr Annetts' charges, the process was from here and what the ramifications could be for Dr Annetts.

"To manage the risk of infection, WHSQ advises that anyone coming into contact with a horse that may be infected with Hendra virus should take precautions based on the presumption that the horse is infected, until Hendra virus can be excluded," the Office of Industrial Relations response said.

"This precautionary approach applies to all infectious diseases where a person may be exposed to risk before the infection is confirmed or excluded.

"Fear of prosecution should not be an issue if these precautions are taken."

Topics:  hendra vet workplace health and safety


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