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MELISSA SWEET | May 04, 2015 | MEDIA-RELATED ISSUES | |

What are you sharing when it comes to health? The latest news on social media

The latest Pew Report of US media trends shows the dynamic state of the news media industry, with the rise and fall of different sectors and publications. While newspapers continue to dive, mobile news consumption maintains its inexorable rise, and podcasts also are gaining popularity. The increasing complexity and diversity in the news media space [...]

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MELISSA SWEET | May 03, 2015 | #150COMMUNITIES | |

Rallying, marching and tweeting for #SOSBlakAustralia

If a picture can tell a thousand words, then the tweets from the #SOSBlakAustralia rallies that were held around the country in recent days surely tell a few books’ worth. In remote communities, country towns, regional centres and the cities, many thousands of people rallied to express support for the rights of Aboriginal peoples, and [...]

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Update: Medical Journal of Australia editorial advisors resign over Leeder sacking, Elsevier outsourcing

*Updated 3 May with response from AMA President Brian Owler and Open Letter from AMPCo to the medical community – please note we are still awaiting clarification on a small number of signatories. Nearly all of the editorial advisors to the Medical Journal of Australia (MJA) have resigned en masse in protest at the sacking [...]

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MARIE MCINERNEY | May 01, 2015 | ABORTION | |

Why Senator Madigan needs to know about non-invasive prenatal testing

A private member’s bill sponsored by Independent Victorian Senator John Madigan seeks to remove Medicare funding for abortions “procured on the basis of gender selection”. Debate on the bill is due to resume this month. Before it does, writes Caroline de Costa in the post below, Senator Madigan – and all of us – should [...]

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MARIE MCINERNEY | April 30, 2015 | CLIMATE CHANGE | |

5 major climate change pressures on health: peak medical, science orgs call on Aust govts to act now

Australia’s peak medical and science organisations today joined forces to call for action from all Australian governments to plan for and address the impacts of climate change on human health. The call came as the Australian Academy of Science launched its new report: Climate Change Challenges to Health: Risks and Opportunities, which has been endorsed [...]

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MARIE MCINERNEY | April 29, 2015 | CANCER | |

Seeing stars: time to cut through the breakfast ‘cereal spin’, plus the launch of #ChoosingWisely

Today saw the launch of the #ChoosingWisely campaign in Australia which aims to encourage conversations between health professionals and patients about tests, treatments and procedures that may provide little or no value, and which may cause harm. See the series of Croakey posts on the initiative, some tweets from the launch at the bottom of [...]

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MARIE MCINERNEY | April 29, 2015 | CHILD HEALTH | |

‘The Coal Face’: fateful decisions & more questions on the ongoing public health crisis of the Hazelwood coal mine fire

The Coal Face by Melbourne journalist and author Tom Doig is a compelling read about the 2104 Hazelwood coalmine fire, which began on 9 February 2014 and burned for 45 days, sending smoke and ash over the town of Morwell in Victoria’s Latrobe Valley. The book is short and sharp, and details fateful decisions made [...]

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MARIE MCINERNEY | April 28, 2015 | CHILD HEALTH | |

A fair shot: MSF launches global #AskPharma campaign for fairer vaccine prices

Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) last week launched a global campaign –‘A fair shot’. It’s calling on pharmaceutical companies GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Pfizer to slash the price of the pneumococcal vaccine in developing countries to US$5 per child, so more children can be protected from this childhood killer, and to disclose what they currently [...]

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MARIE MCINERNEY | April 27, 2015 | CHOOSING WISELY | |

MBS/PBS/over-the-counter reviews as Opposition calls for focus on Choosing Wisely, Medical Homes

Health Minister Sussan Ley has confirmed the Federal Government is looking at removing subsidies from over-the-counter medicines like paracetamol, aspirin, and antacids that can be bought without a prescription and allowing pharmacies to discount the patient co-payment as part of negotiations over the Community Pharmacy Agreement. See her weekend announcement of the review of the [...]

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MELISSA SWEET | April 26, 2015 | CO-PAYMENTS | |

Are co-payments dead? Or is that the sound of Medicare’s last gasps?

Dr Tim Woodruff, vice president of the Doctors Reform Society, writes: The GP co-payment is dead. So said the Prime Minister as he made his third retraction on the issue six weeks ago. However, co-payments are far from “dead, buried and cremated” – and analyses of recent policy announcements suggests we are heading ever faster [...]

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