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Articles by Melissa Sweet

Wonky Health asks: Who are you prepared to sacrifice to climate change?

The health sector must keep talking about the dangers of climate change and highlighting the wide-ranging risks, according to Wonky Health columnist Dr Tim Senior. The aged, children, big-city residents, and the poor are among the groups most at risk of the health impacts of climate change, but no-one is immune, he warns. Tim Senior [...]

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Climate change hits the headlines, despite the intense control efforts at G20

The Australian Government’s efforts to distract the world from its inaction on climate change have been blown out of the water as the G20 leaders meeting kicked off in Brisbane. US President Barack Obama’s speech at the University of Queensland, stressing the importance of climate action, pledging $3 billion to the Green Climate Fund to [...]

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Memo to G20 leaders: the three best buys for health equity (and it takes only five minutes!)

The Brisbane Global Cafe, which is billed as a “pre-G20 thought-leadership forum”, is underway with “75 of the world’s sharpest, provocative and most innovative minds”. The five themes for its two days of discussions are: Improving Human Life; Powering Future Economies; The Digital Age – Entrepreneurship & Innovation; Tourism’s New Frontiers; and Cities of the [...]

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Lessons from an integrated care simulation – and charting some future directions for the health system

Jennifer Doggett and Marie McInerney report: What happens when you get about 85 health leaders into a room to workshop major health policy initiatives? That was the question the Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association (AHHA) wanted to test at a recent Integrated Care Simulation, which aimed to turn Old Parliament House in Canberra into a [...]

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Indigenous doctors’ conference showcases strong culture, strong health

Marie McInerney reports: The centrality of culture to the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples is emphasised in the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013-2023 (which the Federal Government is planning to re-launch with some changes). It was also an important part of the recent Australian Indigenous Doctors’ Association (AIDA) conference [...]

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Ideological warrior takes on the Harper review of competition policy: Wonky Health in action

In his latest Wonky Health column, Dr Tim Senior investigates the implications for healthcare of the Harper Review into competition policy. He examines the ideology and the evidence that motivates both proponents and critics of competition in healthcare, and concludes “to continue pushing an agenda in the health system promoting choice and competition is done [...]

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Conference hears a damning critique of Indigenous housing program

Rosemary Cadden reports from the recent CRANAplus conference: An award-winning Australian company involved in housing projects in disadvantaged regions in Australia and around the world has raised serious questions about a national Indigenous housing initiative with a budget of $5.5 billion. Paul Pholeros, a director of Healthabitat, said successive governments had refused to look at evidence [...]

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Love rural? What WAS that all about…

Each year, the National Rural Health Alliance holds a “CouncilFest”, an event of many parts, including an opportunity for engaging in some policy development and advocacy. During the recent CouncilFest, many Croakey readers may have noticed an avalanche of photos on Twitter of people walking the Canberra halls of power wearing “Love rural” T-shirts. In [...]

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I Heart My People: some stories from behind the scenes

I Heart My People is a three-part documentary series on NITV (Weds 9.30pm), following several Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and emergency professionals. Below are some of their stories (as provided by SBS). *** Stanley Ozies – Remote Aboriginal Health Worker, Derby I’m a Senior Aboriginal Health Worker at the Derby Aboriginal Health Service [...]

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Laughter yoga and Zumba – helping people with chronic kidney disease

Rosemary Cadden reports from the CRANAplus conference in Melbourne:  Far from assuming that people on dialysis are too sick to do physical exercise, Associate Professor Paul Bennett, from Monash Health and Deakin University, says Zumba and laughter yoga should be high on the health regime for people with chronic kidney disease. “It won’t cure kidney disease, but it [...]

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