July / August Issue 2019

JULY /AUGUST ISSUE 2019

This month in The NSW Doctor: fighting stigma in mental health; workforce shortages and under-resourcing in psychiatry; AMA (NSW) recommends a balanced approach to illicit drug use; persuading vaccine-hesitant people to immunise; taking a break from training; VMO performance reviews; employing new staff; and more.

FEATURES

Same solutions to old problems

PRESIDENT'S WORD Same solutions to old problems Budget Day always begs the question, ‘is this the most effective use of our money?’. As I write this column, the NSW Government has just announced its first post-election Budget. Despite the largest revenue writedown in NSW history, the state will be $802m in the black. It’s a [...]

Checking the health of our profession

FROM THE CEO Checking the health of our profession Protecting doctors at all stages of their careers – from doctors-in-training to senior clinicians – is important to the AMA. Last month, we launched our third annual Hospital Health Check survey for doctors-in-training. The survey is an important opportunity for AMA (NSW) to find out what junior [...]

Breaking down

PROFILE Breaking down Psychiatrist Dr Mark Cross worked tirelessly to break down the barriers and stigma associated with mental health, first on behalf of his patients, and then for his colleagues who continue to struggle to meet the unflinching demands of a broken public health system. Dr Mark Cross has spent his entire professional career [...]

Psychiatry: A system under siege

ANALYSIS Psychiatry: A system under siege Frustration from frontline medical staff grows as workforce shortages and under-resourcing threaten to push the public health system to the brink. NSW is facing a crisis in mental health, as dwindling numbers of psychiatrists are left to care for increasing numbers of patients. Depression is now the fourth highest [...]

Progressive policy needed

POLICY Progressive policy needed Responses to illicit drug use are often informed by broader arguments around harm minimisation and zero tolerance. AMA (NSW) urges a balanced approach, that views addiction primarily as a health issue. Amphetamine possession has risen by 250% over the last decade in NSW. And as usage of meth/amphetamines has increased, so [...]

Taking the sting out

FEATURE Taking the sting out Medical professionals are unlikely to persuade anti-vaxxers on immunisation. However, there is an opportunity to encourage people who are vaccine-hesitant by establishing a relationship that is built on trust and respect. The nation’s public health departments are on high alert following warnings that Australia could be stripped of its measles [...]

From the Red Centre to the sea

FEATURE From the Red Centre to the sea Dr Eliza Milliken and her partner, Dr Alexander Whitfield, reflect on taking time out from training and the realities of locuming in rural hospitals. In the era of year to year contracts, the medical “gap year” has become common practice for doctors-in-training. There are lots of reasons [...]

Pathways through medicine

CAREERS SERVICE Pathways through medicine Careers Service offers tailored support to doctors throughout their careers. The NSW Doctor is showcasing the unique stories of doctors who have successfully used Careers Service to further their progress through medicine. Dr Dolapo Sotade shares his journey through medicine. I came to Australia at the age of 10 and [...]

China – health & tourism

FEATURE China - health & tourism Dr David Bell has combined his love of travel with his occupational interests – leading medical and professional tours in China. For many Australians travelling to China, their bucket list of places to see might include the Great Wall, the Xian Terracotta Warriers, the Forbidden Palace, or possibly a [...]

VMO performance reviews

INDUSTRY NEWS VMO performance reviews Not sure what to expect from your performance review? Andrew Campbell explains the Level 1 and Level 2 review process. While annual performance reviews for specialist VMOs don’t always occur, Local Health Districts (LHDs) are required to arrange them. With the exception of the penultimate year of the appointment, the [...]

Employing new staff

Lisa Bennell HR Advisor PROFESSIONAL SERVICES Employing new staff Here’s your guide to recruiting and retaining the right staff for your practice. Managing a medical practice, like any small business, takes time and effort. When things go wrong it can take your attention away from your core role and what you do best – the [...]

Minimum wages increased by 3%

Lyndall Humphries Senior Advisor (Employment Law) PROFESSIONAL SERVICES Minimum wages increased by 3% The Fair Work Commission (FWC) handed down its annual wage review decision which increased the National Minimum Wage and all Modern Award minimum wages by 3% effective from the first full pay period on or after 1 July 2019. The Fair Work [...]

Shared Debt

Dominique Egan Principal - Meridian Lawyers COLUMN Shared Debt The Shared Debt Recovery Scheme acknowledges the responsibility of both medical practitioners and the organisation they work under to ensure claims submitted to Medicare are not false or misleading. The Shared Debt Recovery Scheme (the Scheme) commences on 1 July 2019 and applies to services provided [...]

Coalition promises

Stuart Chan Partner - Specialist Medical Services, Cutcher & Neale COLUMN Coalition promises In the wake of the election, Cutcher & Neale’s Stuart Chan explains how the Coalition’s promises will affect you. The Coalition are providing tax breaks for more than 10 million Australians by simplifying the current system and removing the 37% tax bracket [...]

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The NSW Doctor is the flagship publication of the Australian Medical Association (NSW) Limited. The journal is a prime source of communication with AMA membership providing a forum for medicopolitical debate and informing members of the concerns of contemporary medicine.

The NSW Doctor has a circulation of approximately 8,000, and is published every two months. The journal is distributed exclusively to AMA members, selected media, other organisations and subscribers.

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