Category Archives: Health

STEPHEN DUCKETT. Activity-based funding and prevention: a message for state governments (Croakey)

JENNIFER DOGGETT.  Keeping people well and out of hospital should be a primary focus of our health system.  Yet the evidence is that we could do much better in preventing and managing problems in the community, before they require hospital … Continue reading

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ANTHONY PUN. Advances in Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine.

From a rubber band lizard tail shooter to a molecular biologist and later medical scientist, it took a life time to understand why the lizard loses its tail and is able to regenerate it completely. The advancement of molecule biology … Continue reading

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HEIKO SPALLEK Time to make dental care an election issue.

Doing less but achieving more in dentistry. Scientific breakthroughs in the prevention and treatment of tooth decay and dental disease have not yet converted dental practice, and consequently dental costs, in Australia. It will take a paradigm shift in how … Continue reading

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LESLEY RUSSELL: Time to make dental care an election issue

The Victorian Government’s election commitment to a $395.8 million program to provide free dental care to schoolchildren will be welcome in a state where affordable and timely access to dental care is increasingly difficult. It’s time for a concerted campaign … Continue reading

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DON EDGAR. Looking for the cuckoo in the mental health nest.

As a researcher, I have always been suspicious of statistics touted as incontrovertible truths; and of propagandists for a cause who claim to be the holders of effective remedies for complex social problems.  The current ‘truths’ being touted (and winning … Continue reading

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STEPHEN DUCKETT. The tooth hurts but Victoria’s public dental system is broken (Grattan Institute).

Our dental care system is not working for a lot of Victorians. More than half a million Victorians say that the cost of dental care stopped them from getting care when they needed it in the past 12 months.

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JOHN MENADUE. Health Reform Priorities

Health costs are rising through greater use of technology, ageing, lack of coordination and waste. Doctors provide too many services. Mental , Indigenous and dental health have serious problems. Services are being delivered less equitably. Progress has been made particularly … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. How the politically urgent pushes the important health issues aside.

Australians have some of the best health outcomes in the world measured for example by high life expectancy and low death rates, although that is not the case with Indigenous Australians.  

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HEIKO SPALLEK. No clever answers! Finding the right questions about dental care in Australia.

The significant impact that dental disease makes to the financial and social burdens of preventable chronic illness in Australia is rarely acknowledged, although there is substantial evidence of the inequalities in access to dental care. Dental care is not seen … Continue reading

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ANTHONY PUN. Bullying in the public health system.

The formation of the Australian Health Reform Association (AHReform) is triggered by the need to have a community organisation with members from all healthcare professions to help create a safer working environment for all healthcare professionals so that they can … Continue reading

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MARYANNE DEMASI. Vindication : dietitians cut ties with the sugar lobby.

The Dietitians Association of Australia has pledged to cut financial ties with the sugar lobby following a series of investigations. The DAA initiative and the exoneration of surgeon and sugar critic Dr Gary Fettke are significant steps towards diet reform … Continue reading

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KIM OATES. If we listened to children the world would be a better place

Last week was National Children’s week, with a theme that children’s views and opinions should be respected, that they have a right to be heard.

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MICHAEL THORN. Cricket Australia: Culpable without consequence

Australia’s disgraced cricket trio, Steven Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft, may have engineered the ball tampering scandal in South Africa this year, but the damning cultural review released yesterday has found an arrogant and controlling Cricket Australia essentially to … Continue reading

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IAN TRESISE. A View on the Need for Systemic Change in Health & Wellbeing Education

There is a very strong need in our community for a refreshing whole-of-government approach to confronting the major health issues of our day.  This starts with the recognition that many of our political institutions were developed for an Industrial Age … Continue reading

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STEPHEN LEEDER. Health and wealth travel together.

Self-contained health programs directed at infectious diseases such as HIV, TB, malaria have wrought miracles, saving lives and enhancing prosperity. But a new challenge is looming globally, as subtle as climate change.  No self-contained ‘vertical’ programs work for non-communicable disease: … Continue reading

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JENNIFER DOGGETT. Healthcare’s out-of-pocket crisis (Inside Story, 24.10.18)

Fast-rising medical expenses are restricting access to healthcare and increasing long-term costs. If two Australian capital cities were suddenly left without any dental services it would be considered a national crisis. But a problem of this size occurs each year … Continue reading

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JOHN DWYER. The extraordinary determination of China to have the world embrace its traditional medicine. (Part 3 of 3.)

The artemisia annua plant has been used for centuries in China to fight malaria. In 2011 a Chinese scientist, Tu Youyou, discovered how to extract the ingredient responsible for the anti-malarial effect (now called Artemisinin) and her reward was a Nobel Prize. … Continue reading

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JOHN DWYER. The extraordinary determination of China to have the world embrace its traditional medicine. (Part 2 of 3)

Remarkably and unfortunately politics, not clinical effectiveness, is powering the global penetration of Traditional Chinese Medicine into health care systems. The term “Traditional Chinese Medicine” (TCM) was dreamt up by Chairman Mao Zedong in a cynical response to the Communist … Continue reading

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GRAEME STEWART. Growing inequality in access to health care is curable.

It has been sad to observe the growth in out-of-pocket expenses for patients seeking expert medical consultation and the resultant rising inequality in access to timely care and in health outcomes (“Specialists charging extreme fees”, March 6. These twin inequities … Continue reading

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JOHN DWYER. The extraordinary determination of China to have the world embrace its Traditional Medicine. (Part one of three)

The child was six years old. His parents were struggling to manage his Diabetes. He had Type 1 diabetes, the most serious form of the disease caused by his own immune system destroying his pancreas. As a result he could … Continue reading

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CATHERINE STUBBERFIELD. UNHCR urges Australia to evacuate off-shore facilities as health situation deteriorates.

The following is a transcript of the remarks by Spokesperson for the UNHCR Regional Representation in Canberra, Catherine Stubberfield  at today’s press briefing(12 October 2018) at the Palais des Nations in Geneva. 

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JOHN MENADUE Vale John Deeble – an architect of Medicare

Every Australian owes a great debt to John Deeble who died this week in Canberra, aged 87.  Together with Dick Scotton he provided Gough Whitlam from 1967 onwards with the essential advice on how to establish a compulsory public insurance … Continue reading

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JOHN INVERARITY. Do we have a higher priority as a society than the raising our children: We must end alcohol advertising in sport.

As responsible adults we need to do all we can to ensure that our young are provided with the best opportunities to live purposeful, fulfilling lives and are encouraged to partake of these opportunities. We need to strive to provide them … Continue reading

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LESLEY RUSSELL.Tackling the wicked problems in health – by building bridges with social services.

None of the “wicked’ problems in health – obesity, mental illness and suicide, chronic illness, ageing – will be solved with just hospitals, doctors, nurses and prescription pads. They all require resources beyond those provided by the health care system. … Continue reading

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JONATHAN PAGE. How Buddhism helped this cancer doctor care for his dying patients (ABC Science interview)

Medical oncologist Jonathan Page says being more in the moment helps him to be a better doctor.  His relationships with his patients were once characterised by “coldness…. and a lack of grieving”.  But a mental health crisis that led him … Continue reading

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JENNIFER DOGGETT. AIHW Health Expenditure Australia 2016-17 report – five key lessons.

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW)  has released its Health expenditure Australia 2016–17 report. This report contains detailed data on expenditure throughout our health system and is a valuable resource for governments, policy makers and health stakeholders.

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JERRY ROBERTS. Is Ken Wyatt’s position tenable?.

Ken Wyatt is one of the few high-class acts in a low-class environment known as the Australian Federal Parliament. If he is driven out of the place it will be the Parliament’s loss, not Ken’s

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JOHN GOSS. Health care is getting cheaper (unless you need a specialist, or a dentist) (the Conversation, 28.09.18)

Public and private health expenditure amounted to 10.3% of gross domestic product in 2016-17, almost exactly the same percentage as in 2015-16, according to figures released today by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.

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BRIONY DOW. Do we need a Royal Commission into Aged Care?

With the recent announcement of a Royal Commission into Aged Care, debate is raging in the aged care sector and beyond as to whether it is really needed. 

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ISABELLE LANE. Six big players dominate Australia’s scandal-hit aged care sector (The New Daily, 19.09.18)

Aged care providers are expected to rake in $1.7 billion worth of profits in 2018-19, but reports of poor living conditions in nursing homes have raised concerns that the industry is putting profit before people.

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