Category Archives: Health

IAN WEBSTER.- Advocacy is hard going against the alcohol lobby.

It is a loss powerfully felt,but subdued. Not by politicians or the alcohol industry, but by doctors and nurses in the clinics and rehab. centres. The highly respected Michael Thorn has departed from the Foundation for Alcohol  Research and Education(FARE) … Continue reading

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MICHAEL THORN,- The cricket trifecta-booze,junk food and betting.

Cricket Australia’s gift to fans this Christmas was an unhealthy serving of booze, betting and junk food ads.

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TONY BROE. Privatising Aged Care Assessment Teams

The Federal Government, which has long funded Australia-wide Aged Care Assessment Teams, commonly and often affectionately known as ACATs, has made a ‘surprise’ decision that it will privatise them from April 2021, with a tender to be held this year … Continue reading

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DAVID MORE. The ADHA Is Pulling A Large And Costly Confidence Trick On The Australian Medical Profession.

The Australian Digital Health Agency is expecting the medical profession to make a huge effective financial contribution in time and effort to make a flawed My Health Record System even a very partial success. The profession won’t wear it I … Continue reading

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KERRY GOULSTON. Vietnamese and Australian doctors learning together: reflecting on 20 years of collaboration

This is a story of friendship and support between doctors in Australia and Vietnam, originating some 20 years ago, which shows how modest beginnings have evolved into important and lasting relationships of mutual respect and learning with one of our … Continue reading

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KERRY BREEN and DAVID WEISBROT – Adverse events in healthcare: How to resolve an impasse.

One of the biggest challenges of modern health care, especially care delivered in hospital, is to identify, investigate, respond to and, where possible, prevent the near misses and adverse events that have been consistently documented in many developed countries.

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ALEXANDER HOLDEN and HEIKO SPALLEK. We Must Fill the Hole in our Public Health Services: Why Doesn’t Medicare Cover the Mouth?

In Australia, the cost of visiting a GP can be completely covered by Medicare, with anyone being able to see a medical professional free of charge, regardless of their ability to pay privately.

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LESLEY RUSSELL. Tackling the Emergency Department crisis: Some “what if?” scenarios

The crisis in Emergency Departments is causing harm to patients and staff, and transformative health system re-design is urgently needed.

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JOHN DWYER. What a mess! Insurance for health care, both public and private, is increasingly dysfunctional with sensible and equitable solutions held hostage by “vested interests”. PART TWO

At least 50% of the money private health insurers pay out annually to those insured is absorbed by just 5% off their customers.  Most of these patients have chronic medical problems and have multiple admissions per year .While private hospitals … Continue reading

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GEORGIA BEHRENS. Future doctors demand climate change action now (Insight Plus 18-11-19)

THE MJA-Lancet Countdown released its much-awaited 2019 report on climate change and health in Australia on 14 November 2019. This report provides a critical update on  how Australia is managing climate change, which the World Health Organization has acknowledged as … Continue reading

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JOHN DWYER. What a mess! Insurance for health care, both public and private, is increasingly dysfunctional with sensible and equitable solutions held hostage by “vested interests”. PART ONE

We Australians have for decades now made it clear that we want  a health care system that delivers quality care in a timely manner with availability based on need not personal financial wellbeing. Increasingly it is obvious to all that … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 8 December 2019

With this year’s climate change Conference of the Parties (COP) getting underway this week in Madrid, the articles this week focus on climate change: the future of coal and renewables in China, problems with projects funded by rich nations in … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Health professionals stepping up to support action on climate change

Climate change is already causing injuries, illness and premature death. This is only going to get worse. Health professionals, individually and collectively, are taking action to highlight the health problems, including being arrested for blocking development of the Adani mine.

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JOHN DWYER- On the Barbaric Nature of the Human Condition

It was a right hook in the third round that sent the 26 year old boxer to the canvass. The crowd cheered with excitement; after all, this is what they had hoped to see. On the referee’s count of “five” … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE-The Private Health Insurance industry is a scam subsidised by taxpayers.

For over fifteen years I have been pointing to the failure of PHI both in terms of efficiency and equity.  Not once have the executives of major firms or their lobbyists joined in a public discussion.  They prefer to strong-arm … Continue reading

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JOHN DWYER Australia’s opioid epidemic

The Opioid epidemic that has so devastated America is now well established in Australia.

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DAVID MORE. The #myHealthRecord Is A Major Failure Following A Long List Of Other Major System Failures From The Federal Government Over The Years.

I very recently conducted a poll on my blog following the latest over-done propaganda outburst from the Australian Digital Health Authority (ADHA) in their recent Annual Report. Here is what is showed.

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 17 November 2019

Fire chiefs and health professionals stand up for action on climate change. Fly ash from coal burning causes major problems in Indonesia. The International Energy Agency identifies the main trends influencing energy supply over the next 20 years.

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ARTHUR CHESTERFIELD-EVANS. Government Inaction may be a significant cause of Australia’s World-Leading Cancer Rates

Australia has the highest  rate for cancer according to the World Cancer Research Fund[1].  At 468 /100,000 we are 7% ahead of NZ (who have 438), 33% ahead of the US (352), 40% ahead of Canada (334), 47% ahead of … Continue reading

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CHARLES LIVINGSTONE. Crown has an AGM, amidst the scandals

Crown Resorts Limited has been under siege recently. Multiple inquiries are currently underway across multiple jurisdictions. Allegations include breaches of money laundering regulations, use of the casino by criminal figures, including an arms dealer the subject of UN sanctions, and … Continue reading

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DAVID MORE. Has Health Minister Hunt Been A Bit Too Clever By Half On The #myHealthRecord?

Health Minister Hunt was probably hoping that loosing the recent election would allow him to escape having to work out what to do with the problem child of the MyHealthRecord. He and his party won and now he has to … Continue reading

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PETER MILLER. How big alcohol is trying to fool the Australian public about alcohol guidelines

Over recent weeks, the alcohol industry has been drumming up media discussion about Australia’s guidelines on alcohol consumption, which are under review by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), with new draft guidelines expected to be released for … Continue reading

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JENNIFER DOGGETT, LESLEY RUSSELL. The Private Health Insurance dilemma: a product in search of a role (Croakey 22-10-19)

Medibank has announced that it will become Australia’s first private health insurer to make potential out-of-pocket (OOP) costs publicly available in a move to shore up public trust, after winning a ‘Shonky’ award from consumer group Choice for “junk” policies … Continue reading

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DAVID SHEARMAN. Formulating a medical response to a deadly disease of disordered thinking (Croakey 16-10-19)

 As much of the rest of the world wakes up to the climate crisis, Australia continues to be “a kingpin” of global fossil fuel promotion.

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JOHN MENADUE. The failure of the National Party on rural poverty and rural health.

Country electorates have the most disadvantaged people, the poorest health and inferior health services.  But the National Party does very little about it.

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LESLEY RUSSELL. Where is the Focus on Rural Health (Redux) – Looking at You, National Party

The impacts of drought and climate change on health and wellbeing are threatening to increase the growing gap in health status between Australians who live in metropolitan and rural areas. Yet the Morrison Government and its National Party partners have … Continue reading

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STEPHEN DUCKETT. Time to kill the Private Health Insurance zombies

Two zombie policies stalk the Private Health Insurance (PHI) policy world: A ‘Hospital Benefits Schedule’ and ‘Medicare Select’. Here’s why both should have been put to rest long ago.

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JEFFREY BRAITHWAITE: How to improve the health system, part 2: learn from things going right as well as things going wrong

At the Australian Institute of Health Innovation at Macquarie University we have around 80 projects going on at any point in time. There are more than 180 people – doctoral and masters students, professional staff, researchers, visiting academics and associates … Continue reading

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JEFFREY BRAITHWAITE: How to improve the health system, part 1: support the staff

I hear many stories and over the years have conducted many studies about people’s experiences with doctors and hospitals. I access these in the course of my work as a health systems researcher and some simply come to me as … Continue reading

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KIM OATES. An insidious tragedy

Imagine what would happen if a fully laden 747 airliner crashed in Australia every week for a whole year. There would be public outcry, an outrage, swift political action and  an enquiry at the highest level, possibly a Royal Commission.

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