August, 2015

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Hearing from leaders in Indigenous medical education – plus #LIMEvi Twitter wrap

, Aug 16, 2015

Leaders in Indigenous medical education from Australia, Aotearoa, Canada and Hawai’i gathered in Townsville last week, on the country of the Bindal and Wulgurukaba Peoples, for the sixth conference of the Leaders in Indigenous Medical Education (LIME) Network. With the conference theme of “knowledge systems, social justice and racism in health professional education”, many sessions […]
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The power of words: ‘why we need to stop talking about inequality’

, Aug 12, 2015

As Australian moves to bring about marriage equality again floundered on Tuesday, this post below from New Zealand campaigner Kirk Serpes looks at the need to shift away from problem-focused messaging that’s aimed at “raising awareness” to tackle some of the most complex issues: poverty, inequality and crime. He discusses how “framing” is a powerful […]
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Evaluating public health interventions: an urban regeneration case study

, Jul 10, 2015

How do we evaluate complex health interventions? It is not a new question, as our understanding of the complex nature of health and its determinants has grown, so too has the search for an evidence-based approach. Does a focus on housing and environment work to improve health? How will we know?  Thankfully a new study in […]
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What does marriage equality mean for the Australian health system?

, Jul 02, 2015

The recent decision by the Supreme Court of the US (SCOTUS) on marriage equality has been heralded as a milestone in addressing discrimination against people in same-sex partnerships and also broader issues of injustice affecting the lesbian, gay and bi-sexual, transgender, intersex, queer and allied (LGBTIQA) communities.   The implications for health care may not […]
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Redesigning Australia’s health workforce with Physician Assistants

, Jun 30, 2015

We are often keen to adopt the latest medical technology or new ‘wonder drug’ from other countries but seem less eager when it comes to importing their innovations in health workforce practices.  Yet if we are to meet our health care needs in the future, we will need a health workforce that is continually evolving […]

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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The Good GP never stops learning: the RACGP video that made doctors cry – and patient advocates wince

, Jun 18, 2015

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners has launched a promotional video as part of a community awareness campaign – and the early reviews are mixed, particularly depending on which side of the consulting desk you sit and how you feel about diversity and gender issues. Thanks very much to GP Dr Edwin Kruys for […]
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Professor David Sackett, a ‘giant’ of evidence-based medicine, dies aged 80

, Jun 04, 2015

The BMJ recently described evidence-based medicine as ‘one of the most important medical advances in the past 150 years, alongside the discovery of vaccines and antibiotics’. However, until quite recently the idea of basing clinical decisions on scientific and mathematical data was a controversial concept, resisted by many in the medical profession who argued that […]

Have bravery; will learn

, May 27, 2015

This week the Four Corners expose on bullying in the medical profession has been all over mainstream (see here and here) and social media. An article by Kimberley Ivory and Helen Scott in The Conversation looked at the scope and devastating impact of bullying on both staff and patients.  In Victoria it has previously been announced […]
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Not all “Captain Chaos” but much confusion, concern on post-Budget health issues

, May 19, 2015

There’s plenty of confusion, contention and concern emerging still out of last week’s Federal Budget on health, with particular uncertainty around after hours GP services. Here’s a quick wrap on some of the issues – complete with glossy illustration from the government’s (once far more dreary-looking) official Budget website pages. Health doesn’t get a big […]
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The role of mental health nurses in primary health care

, May 11, 2015

From wimples and capes to suits and medical scrubs, the role of nurses in health care has changed as dramatically as their uniforms over the past 50 years. There is no area of health care today in which nurses do not play a critical role but the way in which they work, both independently and […]
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A medical student explores the importance of Aboriginal culture, Country and the homelands movement

, Apr 11, 2015

Medical student Jaime Fox writes about her placement in Utopia (Northern Territories) and the importance of the homelands movement with Dr Jonathan Kingsley, providing some evidence on the importance of traditional land (known as Country). This discussion was sparked from a conversation held at the recent Doctors for the Environment Australia conference (iDEA2015) after Dr […]
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Choosing Wisely: choosing health services research

, Apr 10, 2015

In the third of a series of articles that Croakey is running on the Choosing Wisely campaign (see the other two here and here), Professor Jon Karnon highlights the role of health services research and argues that it has an essential contribution to make if this initiative is to be successful in improving the quality […]

How GPs balance the dilemmas of prostate testing: study results

, Apr 01, 2015

The evidence suggest the harms of population screening for prostate cancer outweigh the benefits, so why does it remain so popular? It’s a complex issue, particularly for GPs who are on the frontline on decision-making, says Kristen Pickles from the School of Public Health at the University of Sydney. Pickles led a recent study of 32 […]
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Q&A: What can we learn from the US Choosing Wisely campaign to cut down unnecessary tests, treatment?

, Mar 30, 2015

  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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Doctors in distress: join the #dochealth conversation on Twitter

, Feb 14, 2015

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 […]

Marching doctors

, Jan 20, 2015

It’s often said that if you don’t know history, you are cursed to repeat it. Consumer health advocate Martyn Goddard has been around long enough to remember the last time that doctors were up in arms and marching in the streets against a conservative government. It’s a tale that might usefully refresh the memory of […]
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The “Inverse Care Rule” still rules in Dentistry in Australia

, Jan 12, 2015

In the second of two articles on dental education contributed to Croakey, leading Australian dental academics look at the “Inverse Care Rule” and how it applies to dentistry.  The first article in the series on dental education priorities and equity in dental care can be read here. *** Professors Estie Kruger and Marc Tennant write: […]

Dental education in Australia “at a turning point”: how to sustain quality improvement?

, Jan 07, 2015

This post below is the first of two contributed to Croakey by leading Australian dental academics, looking at both dental education priorities and equity in dental care. The second part can be read here. *** Professors Estie Kruger,  Laurie Walsh and Marc Tennant write: Dental education accreditation: What is needed to sustain quality improvement for […]

Tired, sluggish, bloated? Time to detox? “Don’t buy the hype”

, Jan 07, 2015

Thanks to Loretta Marron OAM, CEO of Friends of Science in Medicine for this very timely post. *** Loretta Marron writes: Feeling tired, sluggish and bloated? Recycling bin rattling with empty bottles & cans? Belt a bit tight? What about  that New Year’s Resolution to live healthier this year? This might be the perfect time […]