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CONSUMER HEALTH INFORMATION |

Tony Abbott’s Medicare “deforms” or How to Trick Senators 1.01

The Federal Government’s co-payments Plan B will add another layer of co-payment complexity to the Medicare system that neither doctors nor patients fully understand now. That raises a whole range of issues around unintended consequences, particularly for patients but also for our system, which has prompted this appeal to the Senate to learn from what’s [...]

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Antibiotic Awareness Week: On the path to least resistance

This post below from Professor John Turnidge,  Senior Medical Advisor at the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care, marks Antibiotic Awareness Week (Nov 17-23). It outlines how the Commission’s release of the Antimicrobial Stewardship Clinical Care Standard is another significant step along the path to ‘least antibiotic resistance’, but reports also on [...]

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CONSUMER HEALTH INFORMATION |

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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CONSUMER HEALTH INFORMATION |

Do you support the No Ads Please campaign? It’s a fair question to ask your doctor, say consumer health advocates

More than 200 health professionals have taken a pledge to ban pharmaceutical reps from their rooms since the launch last week of the No Advertising Please campaign, and it’s interesting to read some of their comments. For example: GP Dr John Boffa wrote: Academic detailing influences the prescribing of doctors substantially and it should only [...]

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CONSUMER HEALTH INFORMATION |

Launched: crowdfunding campaign for an app promoting greater accountability in healthcare

Delia Scales, a former nurse whose personal experience of cancer treatment made her acutely aware of health system failings, is on a mission to create greater transparency and accountability in healthcare. Scales, founder of the WikiHospitals news and information site, today launched a crowd-funding campaign to create an app that aims to provide: • An [...]

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CONSUMER HEALTH INFORMATION |

Is this the end of unproven breast imaging in Australia?

A recent story from the West Australian reports that a Perth clinic that falsely claimed to offer an alternative breast screening service which could detect cancer has been fined $75,000, while the controversial former doctor involved must pay a $25,000 penalty. In the following piece public health Lawyer Caitlin Kameron discusses the implications of the decision [...]

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No “perfect storm”: Hazelwood coal mine fire inquiry points to broader health issues, planning implications

“Contrary to suggestions that the Hazelwood mine fire was the ‘perfect storm of events’, all of the factors contributing to the ignition and spread of the fire were foreseeable. Yet it appears they were not foreseen.” The main findings of the inquiry into this year’s Hazelwood coal mine fire in Victoria are focused on what [...]

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The demise of the ANPHA: why it will be ‘drinks all round’ for the alcohol industry and others

A recent seminar at the University of Sydney examined the legacy of the Australian National Preventive Health Agency (ANPHA) in an event also billed by some as “a wake for preventive health”. In the article below, Stephen Leeder, Emeritus Professor of Public Health and Community Medicine at the University of Sydney and Editor-in-Chief of The [...]

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CONSUMER HEALTH INFORMATION |

Taking care of each other online

One of the benefits of the Internet is its use as a tool to create communities among people who previously would have been isolated from each other.  Nowhere is this more apparent than in the growth of online forums for people with chronic illnesses and disabilities.  These are playing an increasingly important role in providing information, support and assistance [...]

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CONSUMER HEALTH INFORMATION |

Unhealthy haste? What are the implications of outsourcing Medicare, PBS claims and services?

Less than two weeks ago the Federal Government called for Expressions of Interest (EOI) from the private sector to provide claims and payment services for Medicare (MBS) and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS), a $29 billion operation currently managed by the Department of Human Services. The EOI closes this Friday, 22 August. Such a privatisation [...]

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