tip off

June, 2010


Why advertising for cold and flu treatments makes me sick (and you as well)

Companies flogging cold and flu treatments may be encouraging the spread of infections because their advertising is encouraging people to soldier on, rather than keeping themselves and their viruses tucked away at home. So says Dr Harry Hemley, president of the Australian Medical Association Victoria. He writes: “I’m getting increasingly irritated by direct to consumer [...]

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Problems with media coverage of health policy…and some suggested solutions

Health policy, let’s be honest, is a turn off for most media managers and editors. Given a choice between a cancer breakthrough (even if it is only in rats) and a change to how health services are delivered or financed, you know which one will get the splash. Who can blame them, really. Health policy [...]

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Some expert health tips for the new PM

Get rid of the private health insurance subsidies and focus on primary health care and prevention, mental health, rural health and other under-served areas. Listen to the wisdom of regional communites rather than central bureaucrats, and rethink some elements of the national health reform agenda. And it would be wonderful if you could help kick [...]

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Rave review for Stephanie Alexander kitchen garden program

The Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program has been given a rave review by an evaluation conducted in Victorian schools, which shows the effects are wide-ranging and extend way beyond simply encouraging healthy eating. The benefits included engaging children in learning, increasing their willingness to try new foods, and improving their knowledge, confidence and skills around [...]

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FOOD|

The push for better food labelling is creating unhealthy alliances

Industry forces are combining to resist moves for healthier labelling of foods, reports Dr Catriona Bonfiglioli. She writes: “The pressure is on to curb marketing of high-energy foods and drinks to children and for all foods and drinks to be labelled in ways which help people choose healthier diets – ideally with traffic light colours. [...]

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Isn’t climate change a health issue?

The daily e-newsletter for doctors, 6Minutes, suggests that the new PM did not mention health in her first press conference. Actually, I think she did. I’d rank education and climate change as two of the more important health issues around. It’s a reminder that we continue to confuse health services with the population’s health. Of [...]

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What will PM Gillard mean for health?

One of the many ironies about Kevin Rudd’s health reform agenda was that he took a controlling, centralised approach to instituting what was billed as developing “local control” for health services. There is a widespread view around the traps that the health reform agenda began to head off the rails when Rudd, his staffers and [...]

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Why we need a more transparent health system…it might be fairer, for starters

This is the third and final post in a series looking at how and why unfairness is built into the health system. Perhaps if there were deliberate efforts to increase transparency at multiple levels and points in the system, this might help to tackle some systemic inequities. Below a range of Croakey contributors identify key [...]

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How unfairness is built in to our health system

Following on from the previous post, which looked at why equity matters, this post makes it clear that inequity is built into our health system in many ways and at many levels. A range of Croakey contributors have provided examples of health inequities. Because the inequities in Indigenous health are so well known, I asked [...]

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Does anyone care about the inequities in health?

An exam paper for a health subject recently asked second-year university students to define equity. “It’s the amount of possessions you have,” was one reply. I heard this story today but wish I’d heard it yesterday. It would have been good to include in a talk that I gave to an Australian Institute of Health [...]

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