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HEALTH REFORM |

What are the challenges and priorities facing the new Primary Health Networks?

This post compiles some reaction to the Federal Government’s recent announcement of the successful tenders for 28 of the 31 Primary Health Networks (more details here; map of boundaries here - or see the list at the bottom of this post). The PHNs will have Community Advisory Committees, and their six key priorities for targeted work are mental [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

Diagnosing some important health gaps in the Intergenerational Report

Science broadcaster Karl Kruszelnicki has expressed “deep regret” over his role in promoting the Federal Government’s Intergenerational Report, citing its inadequate attention to climate change. However, this photo taken just a few days ago in a shopping centre in Mackay in regional Queensland shows that he is still being used to promote the report. Meanwhile, a [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

In full: the four volumes of the Review of Mental Health Programmes and Services, which the Government has been sitting on for five months

Last year, more than 2,000 individuals and organisations made submissions to the 2014 Review of Mental Health Programmes and Services, which was undertaken by the National Mental Health Commission to terms of reference provided by the Federal Government in early 2014. The final report, dated 30 November, makes clear the Commission expected the report to [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

How we’ve ended up with a bankrupt health debate…

Health policy news has been making headlines of late. There’s been: • the Federal Government’s long-awaited announcement on the new Primary Health Networks; • the move to financially penalise conscientious objectors to childhood vaccination (the merits of this approach have been questioned by some public health experts); • calls for action on mental health reform in the wake [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

Private health insurance ‘carrot and stick’ reforms have failed – here’s why

Anne-marie Boxall writes: If your workplace is anything like mine, this week’s private health insurance premium increases might prompt conversations that go something like this: Can you believe our private health insurance costs $421 a month – and we are all really healthy! Some people baulk at the cost of private insurance – especially the [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

Q&A: What can we learn from the US Choosing Wisely campaign to cut down unnecessary tests, treatment?

  Below is the second in a series of posts that Croakey is running on the ground-breaking Choosing Wisely campaign, which will launch in Australia on 29 April. The campaign focuses on cutting down the numbers of unnecessary medical tests and treatment and has been successful in the USA and Canada in reducing non-evidenced based interventions. [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

What are the health issues at stake when #NSWvotes?

NSW voters are expected to return Mike Baird’s Coalition Government this weekend (see reports at The Conversation and The Guardian), but the results in the Upper House are less certain, as former MP Rob Oakeshott pointed out at Croakey earlier this week. What are the health issues and concerns at play? Croakey contributors give their [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

Reform of the Federation and health: Opportunities for change

“While we have a good health system, it is not good for all, and it can be made better.” By Dr Linc Thurecht and Alison Verhoeven, Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association  As a contribution to the Reform of the Federation process, on 16 March 2015 the Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association (AHHA) brought together over [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

The real health issues facing NSW, without the spin

Andrew Wilson writes: What happens when you bring a state health minister face-to-face with her two main challengers, fronting a roomful of health experts, without any TV cameras or dictaphones to leap on any “gaffes” or stumbles? What you can get is a genuinely informative debate, largely free of three-second soundbites. I saw this late [...]

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HEALTH REFORM |

BMJ publishes ‘clusterbomb’ of evidence on benefits of tobacco plain packaging, but fight with companies ‘far from over’

The British Medical Journal today published the findings of a series of studies in a special Tobacco Control supplement showing that Australia’s plain packaging laws are delivering on their promise. Cancer Council Victoria’s Professor Melanie Wakefield, whose team led the evaluation, said research shows plain packaging reduced positive perceptions of cigarette packs among teenagers and [...]

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