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SP 498

SL/S2/06/R6

6th Report, 2006 (Session 2)

Human Tissue (Scotland) Bill as amended at Stage 2

Remit and membership

Remit:

1. The remit of the Subordinate Legislation Committee is to consider and report on-

(a) any-

(i) subordinate legislation laid before the Parliament;

(ii) Scottish Statutory Instrument not laid before the Parliament but classified as general according to its subject matter,

and, in particular, to determine whether the attention of the Parliament should be drawn to any of the matters mentioned in Rule 10.3.1;

(b) proposed powers to make subordinate legislation in particular Bills or other proposed legislation;

(c) general questions relating to powers to make subordinate legislation; and

(d) whether any proposed delegated powers in particular Bills or other legislation should be expressed as a power to make subordinate legislation.

(Standing Orders of the Scottish Parliament, Rule 6.11)

Membership:

Dr Sylvia Jackson (Convener)
Mr Adam Ingram
Gordon Jackson (Deputy Convener)
Mr Kenneth Macintosh
Mr Stewart Maxwell
Murray Tosh

Committee Clerking Team:

Clerk to the Committee
Ruth Cooper

Senior Assistant Clerk
David McLaren

Assistant Clerk
Jake Thomas

Support Manager
Catherine Fergusson

Human Tissue (Scotland) Bill as amended at Stage 2

The Committee reports to the Parliament as follows—

Introduction

1. At its meetings on 24 and 31 January 2006, the Committee considered the inserted or substantially amended delegated powers provisions in the Human Tissue (Scotland) Bill as amended at stage 2. The Committee reports to the Parliament on such provisions under Rule 9.7.9 of Standing Orders.

2. Under Rule 9.7.10, the Executive provided the Parliament with a supplementary delegated powers memorandum1 and correspondence with the Executive is published at Annex A.

Delegated powers

3. The Committee considered all of the powers as set out in the DPM and is content with section 15, new section 15A(2), 16(1)(a) and (b), 36(2)(c), 47(a) and (aa), 48(9) and 48(12)(b) and (c).  The Committee noted that the Executive had fulfilled the undertakings it gave to the Committee following its comments at Stage 1 and, where relevant, has amended the Bill.

Section 15 – Restrictions on transplants involving live donor

4. The Committee noted that Section 15 (Restrictions on transplants involving live donor) contains new powers at subsections (3A) and (3B). The Committee was satisfied with the powers, however it noted that it would have been helpful to have been given an indication of the type of additional condition that might be included in the regulations in the future.

Section 16 – Records, Information etc.: removal and use of parts of human bodies for transplantation etc.

5. The Committee was generally content at stage 1 with the powers at 16(1)(a) and (b) of the bill and is content with the stage 2 amendments which extended the scope of the Bill. However, the Committee at stage 1 sought information from the Executive as to whether the powers as drafted at this section would provide sufficient vires for any relevant confidentiality provision in regulations made under the section. The Executive undertook to consider whether the specific issues covered in the Bill are not already adequately covered by existing Data Protection and Freedom of Information legislation. As the Executive did not comment in the Supplementary DPM on this point, the Committee asked the Executive for reassurance that no specific provision in relation to confidentiality is needed on the face of the Bill. In its response, the Executive reassured the Committee that confidentiality issues are adequately covered elsewhere and that as a result, no specific provisions are required in the Bill. The Committee is content with the Executive’s response.

ANNEX A

Human Tissue (Scotland) Bill as amended at Stage 2

1. On 24th January 2006 the Committee requested an explanation of the following matter.

“The Committee was generally content at stage 1 with the powers at 16(1)(a) and (b) of the bill and is content with the stage 2 amendments.  However, the Committee at stage 1 sought information from the Executive as to whether the powers as drafted at this section would provide sufficient vires for any relevant confidentiality provision in regulations made under the section. The Executive had undertaken to consider whether the specific issues covered in the Bill are not already adequately covered by existing legislation such as Data Protection and Freedom of Information legislation.  The Committee therefore seeks the Executive’s reassurance that no specific provision in relation to confidentiality is needed on the face of the bill”.

The Scottish Executive responded as follows:

2. It is the Executive’s view that the regulation making power in section 16(1) of the Human Tissue (Scotland) Bill does not need to extend to include a specific provision relating to confidentiality to enable the intended regulations to be made. 

3. Section 16(1)(a) of the Bill carries forward the provisions of section 3(1) of the Human Organ Transplants Act 1989.  The existing Regulations under that section of the 1989 Act are the Human Organ Transplants (Supply of Information) Regulations 1989 (SI 1989 No. 2108).  In relation to Scotland, those regulations require registered medical practitioners to supply certain specified information about transplants to Health Boards.

4. Thus registered medical practitioners in Scotland will be required to supply specified information about transplants to Health Boards under section 16(1)(a) whilst section 16(1)(b) will make provision regarding the provision of information to Scottish Ministers of relevant information. All of the bodies involved are public bodies already subject to the Data Protection legislation such that no specific provision in relation to confidentiality is needed on the face of the bill.


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