Queensland's Health Minister says he will try to ensure a landmark payout against a former government minister doesn't come from the health budget.
Dr Chris Davis has been awarded more than $1.4 million in damages after he was denied a job with the Metro North Hospital and Health Service following his resignation as an assistant minister in the then-LNP state government.
Dr Davis successfully argued that he had been discriminated against when he missed out on a job in the months after he left State Parliament after falling out with then-premier Campbell Newman.
Asked about the issue on Tuesday, current Labor Health Minister Steven Miles said he did not want the settlement to be paid for at the expense of Metro North's bottom line.
"This decision only came down yesterday so I'm working through the details of how that settlement can be made," Mr Miles said.
"Obviously I am interested to make sure it doesn't come from Queensland Health coffers, but this is the result of the LNP's decision to try to silence Mr Davis.
Later, while answering a Dorothy Dixer in Parliament about new beds at the Queensland Children's Hospital, Mr Miles expanded on his attack on the Opposition over the QCAT judgment.
"Dr Chris Davis was the only qualified applicant for a position but he was discriminated against by those opposite," Mr Miles said.
"What was his crime? He disagreed with Campbell Newman.
"He disagreed with the LNP, he was black banned, he could not work because those opposite do not respect our doctors.
"While those opposite are busy defending Campbell Newman's legacy, I invite them to work out which health services should be cut to pay for the $1.45 million of damages for their discriminatory actions."
In her decision, QCAT member Clare Endicott noted Dr Davis had been “publicly critical of the Liberal National Party government and in particular, of the Premier”.
“Public comments made by the Premier, Campbell Newman, laid the blame for the defeat of the Liberal National Party at the feet of Dr Davis,” she said.
Although Metro North HHS denied consideration of Dr Davis’s political activity influenced the decision, Ms Endicott found otherwise.
“An inference of discrimination is open on the cumulative weight of the evidence, that a decision was made on 2 September 2014 not to employ Dr Davis because of Dr Davis’s attribute of political belief and activity,” she said.
“There was no innocent explanation given by [then-Metro North HHS chief executive Malcolm] Stamp or [board chairman] Dr [Paul] Alexander for the decision that could satisfactorily negate that inference.
“In fact, the evidence reveals that no reason was given for the decision by the chief executive officer at that time: not clinical streaming, not budgetary concerns, not a concern about his ‘fit’ for the role.
“It is reasonable for the tribunal to draw the inference that the reason for the decision was directly connected to who the sole applicant was and to his recent actions (less than four months previously and as recently as late July 2014) as a politician and a potential future political candidate.”
Stuart Layt covers health, science and technology for the Brisbane Times. He was formerly the Queensland political reporter for AAP.