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 […]
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#cripcroakey: introducing Croakey readers to the wonderful, wild world of disability politics, policy & people

, Aug 14, 2015

Croakey is excited to be working with El Gibbs, who is today launching a crowd-funding campaign  – #cripcroakey – to fund a series of articles on disability and health. El brings great insights and expertise and a compelling voice. She has over 15 years experience in the community and not-for-profit sector, working in policy and […]
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Blocking #marriageequality: ‘It is frustrating, hurtful, incredibly exhausting & deeply personal’

, Aug 13, 2015

Prime Minister Tony Abbott put an end this week to hopes for marriage equality this year in Australia, with the decision by the Coalition party room to not allow a conscience vote on the issue – effectively sealing its defeat were it to come to Parliament. Now the focus is on whether a decision might […]

Winter hospital bed crisis – could we be doing better?

, Aug 11, 2015

Most non-urgent elective surgery in Adelaide’s public hospitals was cancelled last week and some patients transferred to neighbouring regional hospitals after SA Health faced its busiest day (so far) this winter. In the post below, Professor Jon Karnon asks what could have and should be done better to both prevent and manage demand, with the […]
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Will #COAG calls for new focus on primary care, keeping people out of hospital mean reform goes beyond GST, Medicare levy hikes?

, Jul 23, 2015

‘Frankly, if we can have a conversation rather than a scare campaign, our country will be so much better off,’ said Prime Minister Tony Abbott as the 40th Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting wound up on Thursday. Chance would be a fine thing perhaps – particularly with lifting the rate of the GST and […]
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Shame and Disgrace in the Governance of Food and Nutrition Policy for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples

, Jul 01, 2015

The failure of successive governments to act on improving food and nutrition for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples is a “shame and disgrace”, according to University of Newcastle researcher Dr Mark Lock. In an exhaustive investigation of the fate of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nutrition Strategy and Action Plan 2000-2010, he […]
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#SOSBlakAustralia – What’s happening in the NT?

, Jun 24, 2015

Coinciding with an #SOSBlakAustralia global call to action on June 26, 27, and 28 against threatened closures of remote communities in WA, a community forum in Darwin this weekend will hear of wide-ranging concerns facing Top End Aboriginal communities. Thomas Mayor, Secretary NT Branch of Maritime Union of Australia, writes: Towards the beginning of the […]
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“Suddenly, nothing happened!” Health Minister Sussan Ley leaves mental health reform “in limbo”

, Jun 19, 2015

Health Minister Sussan Ley yesterday announced the Federal Government’s next step in taking the National Mental Health Commission’s landmark Review “from paper to policy” – with the first meeting held of an expert reference group “tasked with guiding the implementation of its recommendations”. She said the 13-person Expert Reference Group (see the full list in […]
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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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Inawintji’s Story on Living Black tonight: “the high price to pay for staying well”

, Jun 16, 2015

Access to healthy and affordable food and good health care is a big issue for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, particularly those living in remote communities. The recent National Rural Health Conference in Darwin has called for a Senate Inquiry into food security for remote communities, while the Ngaanyatjarra, Pitjantjatjara and Yankunytjatjar (NPY) Women’s […]
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Calling for an inquiry into food security for remote communities – and other priorities from #ruralhealthconf

, Jun 11, 2015

In the Croakey Conference Reporting Service’s final report on the recent National Rural Health Conference in Darwin, Jennifer Doggett gives an overview of the priorities for rural health action, including calls for a Senate Inquiry into food security for remote communities. Jennifer Doggett writes: The influence of #ruralhealthconf will continue long after delegates have returned […]
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How the arts contributed “substance and soul” to #ruralhealthconf

, Jun 02, 2015

Jennifer Doggett reports Shadow Assistant Minister for Health, Stephen Jones, got it right at the closing session of #ruralhealthconf when he described it as having ‘both substance and soul’. From Shellie Morris’s rousing performance at the opening ceremony to the closing dance from the Kailani Dancers, much of the ‘soul’ of the conference was due […]
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Is it time to rethink the possibilities for rural health?

, May 28, 2015

Jennifer Doggett reports from Darwin:  ‘Possibilities’ was the theme of the final day of #ruralhealthconf, and the ideas put forward by the keynote and concurrent session speakers challenged delegates to broaden their horizons and re-think narrow conceptions of rural health. From the forces of globalisation, to the impact of domestic economic policies, to the need for […]
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Announcing the program for #IHMayDay15 on Friday – please tune in on Twitter

, May 27, 2015

Below we announce the program for #IHMayDay15 on Friday – a day of action and listening on Twitter on all matters to do with the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It runs from 7am-10pm. Please tune into the hashtag over the next few days and most especially on Friday: Aboriginal and Torres […]
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On the importance of place (and produce) for rural health

, May 26, 2015

Jennifer Doggett reports from Darwin: A picture of a mouldy lettuce and tired looking carrot selling for $6 in a remote area of Australia was a powerful reminder to delegates at #ruralhealthconf of the challenges involved in rural and remote health. Professor Alan Cass from the Menzies School of Health Research used this example to […]
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What will it take to improve rural health? Internet, internet, internet…

, May 26, 2015

Jennifer Doggett reports: One of the most important outcomes from the National Rural Health Conference in Darwin will be a set of recommendations for action to improve health services in rural and remote areas and to overcome some of the barriers to good health. These recommendations will be developed via a collaborative and structured process open to […]
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Profiling success stories and challenges at #ruralhealthconf

, May 25, 2015

Jennifer Doggett reports from the 13th National Rural Health Conference in Darwin Personal story telling, international law, political campaigning and cutting edge research combined to make a powerful case for a person-centred health system on Day 1 of the #ruralhealthconf. However, the need to see people within the context of their connections to families, communities, […]
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#RuralHealthConf kicks off – with songs, tweets, and a call for “fair care”

, May 24, 2015

The 13th National Rural Health Conference kicked off in Darwin yesterday, and below are some of the introductory reports. Two hashtags are running – follow #ruralhealthconf and #NRHC15. Also follow @WePublicHealth, where rural mental health advocate Alison Fairleigh is guest tweeting, and @JenniferDoggett, who is covering the event for the Croakey Conference Reporting Service. Dr […]
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A call for women MPs to come together, across party lines, on abortion reform in NSW, Qld

, May 22, 2015

Significant reform in 2008 in Victoria of the state’s abortion law was achieved – say Professors Heather Douglas and Caroline de Costa – because women MPs overwhelmingly voted, across party lines, to support the Bill. In the article below, they say New South Wales women MPs should now get behind Greens MP Mehreen Faruqi and […]
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Health funding: time for the states to impose a “hospital” levy on property?

, May 20, 2015

The Federal Government appears to have gotten away, politically at least, with the massive cut it made in last year’s Budget to funding promised to the states for hospitals, says the Grattan Institute’s John Daley. For all the protests, he says most of the states will respond as they usually do, “with piecemeal increases to […]