This month in The NSW Doctor: it's the environment edition and there are a range of stories on everything from greening your practice to the need for a comprehensive climate change plan in Australia, plus industry news concerning Northern Beaches Hospital and company structures, changes to abortion laws in Queensland and the relevance to NSW, news on employing casual workers, analysis on the case of Hadiza Bawa-Garba, and more.



Looking beyond the front door

PRESIDENT'S WORD Looking beyond the front door As a profession and as an association, one of the questions we face is how far does our commitment to better health extend? IN OUR DAY TO DAY work, it is easy to become enmeshed in day to day details, such that it can be hard to appreciate [...]

Clinician engagement

FROM THE CEO Clinician engagement The Northern Beaches Hospital contract dispute highlights the importance of engagement with senior clinicians.If this is not re-established, it's not going to matter what the building looks like, this project won't work. Since the last edition of The NSW Doctor, AMA (NSW) has been busy focusing on critical issues for [...]

Northern Beaches Hospital – VMO contract update

INDUSTRY NEWS Northern Beaches Hospital - VMO contract update AMA (NSW) was actively negotiating contracts on behalf of members with Healthscope in the final days before the new hospital was to open. At the time of writing, the deadline for doctors to return VMO contracts for Public Patient work at Northern Beaches Hospital (NBH) had [...]

Company or Sole Trader: What structure is best for you?

INDUSTRY NEWS Company or Sole Trader: What structure is best for you? Many VMOs considering company arrangements may not be aware that there have been rule changes. So, is there still any value in operating via a company structure? Historically, VMOs faced two major tax complications when operating as a sole trader. Prior to 1 [...]

National Law – Fit for purpose?

NEWS National Law - Fit for purpose? A number of controversial changes to national legislation governing the registration and accreditation of health practitioners are under review. What does it mean for you? The Australian Health Ministers' Advisory Council (AHMAC) closed the consultation period on reforms to the National Law 31 October. Federal AMA, along with [...]

Changes to abortion laws

NEWS Changes to abortion laws The Queensland Government's historic vote to decriminalise abortion has shifted the focus to NSW. IN MID OCTOBER, the Queensland Government voted to support "Termination of Pregnancy Bill 2018", which takes abortion out of the criminal code and allows a woman to terminate her pregnancy on request up to 22 weeks. [...]

AMA rejects changes to surgical assistants

NEWS AMA rejects changes to surgical assistants Federal AMA has strongly opposed changes proposed by the MBS Review Taskforce that would overhaul current remuneration arrangements for surgical assistants. The MBS Review Taskforce – MBS Principles and Rules Committee (PRC) alerted Federal AMA in early September of its recommendation that new arrangements be introduced under which the [...]

Activity-based working: AMA (NSW) criticises draft policy

NEWS Activity-based working: AMA (NSW) criticises draft policy NSW Health's draft policy on staff specialist office accommodation has drawn criticism from doctors' groups. AMA (NSW) raised concerns with Health Minister Brad Hazzard in late September that the draft Workplace Accommodation policy and the complementary document, the NSW Government Fitout Design Principles could drive further disengagement [...]

New risks when employing casuals

PROFESSIONAL SERVICES New risks when employing casuals Changes to Modern Awards and a recent Federal Court decision have put rules for casual employees in the spotlight. WE REGULARLY WARN members that hiring casuals can be fraught with unexpected risk, particularly if those employees end up staying in the business for an extended period of time. [...]

What happens after?

ANALYSIS What happens after? Dominique Egan provides some post analysis on the case of UK doctor Hadiza Bawa-Garba, and the position in New South Wales. THE UK Court of Appeal has upheld Dr Bawa-Garba's appeal of the UK High Court's decision that she be disqualified from medical practice, and the suspension order has been restored. [...]

How to green your practice

FEATURE How to green your practice The Riverstone Family Medical Practice's purpose-built facility features practical design elements that reduce the building's environmental footprint. Drs Sharon Muir and Michelle Crockett have built a practice that is not only making a difference to the health and wellbeing of their local community, it's making a difference to the [...]

The irony of healthcare

FEATURE The irony of healthcare The healthcare sector is responsible for healing patients, but could it also be making us sick? As health professionals, we have an expected overriding duty of care to do no harm and advocate for action to protect health and humanity. Yet few of us consider the health consequences associated with [...]

Green prescriptions

FEATURE Green prescriptions The health benefits of our natural environment are worth protecting, argues Dr John Van Der Kallen. A healthy environment is central to human health. It provides us with clean air, water, food and a stable environment. As we become increasingly urbanised, it is easy to forget how much we are part of [...]

The curse of cornucopia

FEATURE The curse of cornucopia Dr Michael Schien argues industrial food systems present big healthcare challenges, as the prevalence of overweight and obesity grows. Food has never been so abundant for Earth's 7.6 billion humans as it is right now – so plentiful that 2 billion of us are overweight or obese, tripling since 1975. And [...]

Sound The Alpenhorn

FEATURE Sound The Alpenhorn Dr David Shearman argues Australia should follow Switzerland's lead and develop a comprehensive climate change plan. My story about our nation's future health needs begins at 1500m above sea level in the Swiss Alps. I am having a beer and chewing the cud with a Swiss farmer in his lush alpine [...]

No time for games

FEATURE No time for games Children and future generations stand to lose the most from our inaction on climate change, writes Dr Ingo Weber. Reports from both The Lancet and the World Bank on the health impacts of climate change estimate that we are likely to exceed the "safe" threshold of 2°C within this century. [...]

Plastic revolution

STUDENT VIEW Plastic revolution Single-use plastic in hospitals is in the crosshairs for the next generation of medical professionals. The movement to ban the use of single-use plastic is gaining momentum. Plastic shopping bags, coffee cups, and food packaging have all been under public scrutiny resulting in significant social and governmental changes. The argument is [...]

Spring Cup 2018

FEATURE Spring Cup 2018 When all the stars align, nothing beats a good day on the golf course. ASK ANY GOLFER what makes a perfect game of golf and they will always nominate great weather, a challenging course, friendly playing partners and, finally, good scores. This year, for the Spring Cup, we hit the jackpot. [...]

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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.