August, 2015

The Health Wrap: The Vegemite news spread; On your bike (sans helmet); a chronic problem; funding medical research and teens’ troubling mental health.

, Aug 17, 2015

                  This week’s Health Wrap is compiled by my colleague Megan Howe, the Sax Institute’s Publications Manager. Enjoy the Wrap and tweet us via @medicalmedia or @meghowe68 if you have any ideas for future issues. By Megan Howe The Vegemite news spread The use and abuse of […]

The Health Wrap: Windfarm woes, the vaccination conversation, hope for medicinal cannabis, improving organ donation rates

, Jun 19, 2015

                  This fortnight’s Health Wrap has been prepared by my colleague Ellice Mol, Digital Communications Manager at The Sax Institute. Send your ideas for The Health Wrap to me on Twitter via @medicalmedia. By Ellice Mol  Huff and puff on windfarms Prime Minister Tony Abbott sparked renewed discussion […]
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Federal Budget Preview

, May 12, 2015

With the 2015-16 Federal Budget only hours away, Croakey has prepared the following summary of the announcements already made in the health portfolio and compared these against the recommendations made by key organisations in their Federal Budget submissions.   While some of the requests from the sector have already fully or partially met (indicated below) through […]
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Walkley Awards: catch up on some of Australia’s best journalism

, Jan 06, 2015

The siege of the Lindt cafe in Sydney late last year showcased some of the best and worst aspects of journalism in Australia, with surely the top prize for poor taste going to our most powerful media man, Rupert Murdoch, for his tweet just hours after its tragic resolution: Much already has been written about the […]
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Federation reform: issues raised in the Health Issues Paper

, Dec 15, 2014

The Federal Government last week released, with little fanfare, the Issues Paper on Health to inform the White Paper on the Reform of the Federation. See the media release from Prime Minister Tony Abbott and this snapshot of the “threshold questions” to be addressed. In response, the Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association today released a […]

Why aren’t paramedics registered?

, Nov 07, 2014

Ruth Townsend writes in this post below that if  you completed a first aid course last weekend then you could call yourself a paramedic. She asks how the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council can justify its decision last month to defer the inclusion of paramedics on the Australian Health Practitioner register, a move that has […]
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The Health Wrap: HIV/AIDS; environmental health; sugar wars

, Jul 25, 2014

By Frances Gilham HIV and AIDS: pain and progress This fortnight we witnessed the devastating news about the Malaysia Airlines flight disaster. Grief and shock hit an international conference on HIV and AIDS being held in Australia – AIDS 2014 – when the news emerged that some of the world’s leading HIV/AIDS researchers and advocates […]
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Living longer, but chronic disease toll rising: Australia’s 14th biennial health report card (and what of its own future?)

, Jun 25, 2014

We are living longer, have lower death rates for cancer and many other diseases, and a health system that people say they are mostly happy with. But chronic diseases related to our ageing population as well as to lifestyles and health habits are taking an increasing toll. That’s the verdict of Australia’s Health 2014, the […]
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New report highlights why the federal budget is such a problem for health

, Jun 11, 2014

The COAG Reform Council has delivered its final report evaluating the impact of the national health reform agreement, Healthcare in Australia 2012–13: Five years of performance. The report examines progress in four of the seven areas to be tracked under the agreement. As the images below show, there have been some notable improvements but many challenges remain. It […]
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#Budget2014 risks to ‘closing the gap’ include Indigenous cancer impact

, May 20, 2014

There is growing concern that harsh Federal Budget measures on health and other funding areas will put at risk efforts to close the gap for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health. In the post below, health researcher Clive Aspin says the Budget will increase the health and social disparities between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. He […]
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#Budget2014 medical research fund is “unfair and unethical”

, May 19, 2014

Prime Minister Tony Abbott declared on ABC Radio National’s Breakfast program this morning: “There are no cuts to health or education. In health, all of the money we are saving is going into the Medical Research Investment Fund and that’s going to be dedicated to finding the treatments and the cures of the future that […]
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#Budget2014 health measures to have bigger impact on women

, May 19, 2014

The impact of the Federal Budget on women goes way beyond so-called ‘specific interest’ measures like the paid parental leave scheme and changes to family benefits, says Kristine Olaris, CEO of Women’s Health East in Victoria, who warns that GP co-payments and additional charges for prescriptions and tests will further increase gender inequality in Australia. […]

Audit Commission proposals on mental health, homelessness “without context, understanding”

, May 02, 2014

The recommendations of the Federal Government’s National Commission of Audit on mental health are “without context or apparent understanding” and will only add to the inequity that people with a mental illness already experience, says Sebastian Rosenberg, Senior Lecturer at Sydney University’s Brain and Mind Research Institute. See his post below on the recommendations on […]
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What might the National Commission of Audit mean for healthcare?

, Jan 28, 2014

What might we expect from the National Commission of Audit when it comes to health policy? Looking back might help us look to the future, suggests one analyst. Commission Redux? “William Foggin” writes: As we wait for the Commission of Audit  to bring down a set of recommendations justifying the Abbott Government’s aspirations for spending cuts, […]
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Tackling dementia in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities: a personal story of loss and transformation

, Dec 05, 2013

The challenges of dementia for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and communities were highlighted in a powerful and deeply personal presentation to the recent Closing the Credibility Gap symposium in Melbourne. The symposium also heard of a range of resources available to help people find relevant information and resources, reports Marie McInerney, a journalist […]
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Can a new breed of “coaches” help transform mental health care?

, Nov 22, 2013

Jennifer Doggett reports on an innovation in mental health care profiled at the Health Workforce Australia Conference 2013 in Adelaide  When your health workforce is already working at capacity, how do you address the un-met need for care among those with early-stage disease without depleting the services available to people with serious illnesses? Creating a completely new […]
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Do we need a Minister for the Rehabilitation of Politics?

, Sep 09, 2013

What does the health sector want from a new Federal Government and a new Health Minister?  At last week’s Palliative Care Australia Conference in Canberra there was a panel session on what should be expected from the new government in its first 100 days.  The Executive Director of the National Rural Health Alliance, Gordon Gregory, offered […]
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A briefing for the next Federal Government: how to improve access to palliative care

, Sep 05, 2013

The need for greater support and care for people dying at home, and for greater investment in the aged care workforce was highlighted at the 12th Australian Palliative Care Conference in Canberra yesterday. Experts also called for an end to the funding silos of aged and palliative care, and for more consumer, family and carer engagement in […]
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It’s been a long struggle, like pushing a big rock up a steep hill, but advanced care planning is now here to stay

, Sep 03, 2013

After more than two decades of struggle, Advance Care Directives are finally gaining acceptance within the health system. That’s according to Colleen Cartwright, Foundation Professor of Aged Services and Director of the ASLaRC Aged Services Unit at Southern Cross University. At the 12th Australian Palliative Care Conference in Canberra this week, Professor Cartwright will talk about […]
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So you want to make an app? Some helpful hints

, Jun 19, 2013

So you want to make an app? What your organisation needs to know. This was the topic of a workshop run at the Australian Health Promotion Association conference in Sydney earlier this week that was bound to draw interest, given that we seem to be living in the age of the app. Below is a […]