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HEALTH REGULATION |

A chance to “get social” with AHPRA

One small tweet – but one huge step. The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) is finally showing signs of “getting social”. Not only has it listened to the Twitter-storm  of concern about guidelines affecting social media commentary about regulated health professionals, it is engaging in the Twitterverse via @AHPRA. Tune in at 12 noon on [...]

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HEALTH REGULATION |

The TGA – a watchdog with dentures?

Note: A response from the TGA was added on 28 March – see bottom of post. Questions are again being raised about the effectiveness of the Therapeutic Goods Administration as a regulator, with two Canberra University academics suggesting that “a culture of regulatory inertia” is entrenched at the TGA. *** Canberra Law School academics Bruce [...]

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HEALTH REGULATION |

Medicare Locals under review: what Croakey contributors (and others) want to see, and what they fear

The future of Australia’s fledgling Medicare Locals – set up to integrate the fragmented primary health care sector – is officially under review. Many of those with a stake in that future rushed to lodge submissions by the December 23 deadline, following the long-awaited mid-December announcement on the review by Health Minister Peter Dutton which [...]

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HEALTH REGULATION |

Alcohol “policy pause” as funding cut for the peak alcohol and drug agency

Australia’s peak alcohol and drug agency, the Alcohol and other Drugs Council of Australia (ADCA), learned early this week that it was being defunded, forcing it into voluntary administration. In a statement, ADCA said the decision by Assistant Health Minister Fiona Nash “ignores previous undertakings and commitment” about ongoing funding to 2015. In the article [...]

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HEALTH REGULATION |

Heated debate at workforce conference over whether health care assistants should be regulated

The role  of health care assistants was the subject of heated debate at a workshop in Adelaide yesterday, held ahead of the official opening today of the Health Workforce Australia 2013 conference. Jennifer Doggett reports from Adelaide: Health care assistants provide vital front-line services to some of the sickest and most vulnerable people in our [...]

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HEALTH REGULATION |

Putting primary health care on the federal election agenda

The next Federal Government must adopt a health-in-all-policies approach, a fairer distribution of healthcare funding and resources, and a greater focus on early childhood. So says the election policy platform from the Australian Medicare Local Alliance, which also calls for more flexible funding and streamlined reporting for Medicare Locals (available in full detail here). The [...]

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HEALTH REGULATION |

Cancer patients push for election commitment on genetic patenting

Legislative changes are urgently needed to stop patents being granted over human genetic material, according to Sally Crossing AM, from Cancer Voices Australia. Below is a summary of her recent presentation on this issue to a Coalition Backbench Policy Committee, on behalf of Cancer Voices, representing people affected by cancer. *** Making a difference for [...]

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HEALTH REGULATION |

If you support stronger regulation of pharma/doctor interactions, now is the time to speak up

A bill has been introduced into the Senate that would restrict interactions between the pharmaceutical industry and the medical profession. Most of the submissions to a Senate committee inquiry into the proposals have come from industry. In the article below, Dr Ken Harvey, adjunct associate professor at La Trobe University, urges concerned members of the public and [...]

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HEALTH REGULATION |

A conversation that needs to continue: what to do about the relatively small number of doctors who account for so many patient complaints

The online ecosystem, linking up journals, bloggers, mainstream media and researchers with the wider world, is bringing new opportunities for researchers to hear and learn from the responses to their findings. The article below documents some of the wide-ranging responses to a recent study which found that a small proportion of doctors account for a [...]

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HEALTH REGULATION |

Consumer group calls for a “fundamental shift” in how pharmacy services are funded

Important questions about the governance of the multi-billion dollar agreement between the Federal Government and Pharmacy Guild of Australia (representing pharmacy owners) are raised in the article below. Carol Bennett, CEO of the Consumers Health Forum, argues that the Fifth Community Pharmacy Agreement - a $15.4 billion investment by taxpayers over five years – fails to meet [...]

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