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Articles by Melissa Sweet

Is the Dietitians Association of Australia in the pocket of Big Food?

Public health lawyer, author and blogger Michele Simon has been investigating conflicts of interest and the Dietitians Association of Australia.  Simon, president of Eat Drink Politics, a corporate watchdog consulting firm in the US, has released an Australian edition of “And Now A Word From Our Sponsors”, detailing close links between the food industry and DAA. [...]

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Wonky Health goes out with a bang. And an investigation of Evidence-Based Voting

It is a truth almost universally acknowledged that the state of Australian politics is deeply unsatisfying for those who care about evidence, outcomes and fairness. Perhaps it is time for a novel concept, Evidence-Based Voting? In the final instalment of his crowd-funded Wonky Health column, Dr Tim Senior investigates what difference it might make if [...]

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On life and death: poetry of the paramedic

As regular readers may remember, Croakey has been running an occasional series, Poems of Public Health. I happened to mention this at a University of Canberra writing retreat this weekend, and one of the participants – Allison Ballard, a lawyer who previously worked as an intensive care paramedic – produced this poem especially for Croakey [...]

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Doctors in distress: join the #dochealth conversation on Twitter

Enormous interest was generated by a recent Croakey article urging medicine to confront “the dark side” of its institutional culture in the wake of the recent deaths of four junior doctors. The article was by Dr Kimberley Ivory, Senior Lecturer, Population Medicine and Sub-Dean of Student Support in the Sydney Medical School at the University [...]

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A tribute to Tim Moore, and his wide-ranging contributions to community health

By Melanie Walker and Scott Davis  It is with great sadness that we reflect on the sudden passing of Timothy David Moore late last year.  While we are all devastated by Tim’s loss, those of us who knew him are keen to shine a light on his many professional achievements. Tim’s contribution was wide-ranging and [...]

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A call for medicine to stop devouring its young

The recent deaths of four junior doctors are an urgent reminder that medicine needs to confront “the dark side” of its institutional culture, says Dr Kimberley Ivory, Senior Lecturer, Population Medicine and Sub-Dean of Student Support in the Sydney Medical School at the University of Sydney. *** Kimberley Ivory writes: Media reports have highlighted the recent sudden [...]

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Calling for health reform – that won’t be a health hazard

Dr Frank Jones, a GP from Mandurah in WA and president of the Royal Australian College of GPs, is worth watching in this presentation made yesterday to the Senate Select Committee inquiring into federal health policy. When asked, what is the one thing he would tell a new PM (if this eventuates), he replied: “Countries with [...]

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“My feelings about climate change are a mixture of awe, hope, despair, frustration and anger.”

Could an old-fashioned technology – like hand-written letters – help to solve one of the most difficult public health communications challenges of the modern era? Science communicator Joe Duggan has been experimenting with a project - Is This How You Feel? - that seeks to create change by connecting the public with the emotions of climate scientists. [...]

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Why reform is difficult. Health ministers are in office but not in power.

Hopefully, someone, somewhere – whether in the Federal Coalition or in the ALP – is putting some serious thought into community-centred health reform. As health leaders have suggested, it’s well past time to move past “thought bubbles” masquerading as policy. In the article below, experienced policy analyst John Menadue (pictured below) identifies some of the challenges [...]

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What can power, money and influence offer public health? The #NPC vs #QldVotes

The Prime Minister’s much-anticipated speech to the National Press Club today was a reminder – if we needed one – that public health concerns are not high on his agenda. You can read the full speech here, or try this summary by The Guardian’s Lenore Taylor. Or, some short versions from the Twittersphere: The Twittersphere also noted [...]

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