Virtual Visits give general practitioners more options to book NPS CPD at a date and time that suits them.
Virtual visits are interactive discussions or topic content and as such, they qualify for RACGP and ACRRM accreditation, typically;
The topics available are posted on the NPS website.
General practitioners and practice managers who would like to book an NPS Virtual Visit can book through the website or contact Nicole Humphry at WAPHA on 08 6272 4921 or email Nicole.Humphry@wapha.org.au.
Pathology Laboratories are reporting that a significant number of samples are being submitted from women under 25 years of age. Medicare does not fund routine HPV screening tests in women under 25 and testing of these samples will either need to be privately funded by the patient or, with the consent of the referring practitioner, not be processed.
Commencing screening at age 25 will reduce the investigation and treatment of common cervical abnormalities that would usually resolve by themselves. It can take 10 to 15 years for cervical cancer to develop from persistant HPV.
Women under 25 years who are currently under clinical management for a cervical abnormality should be managed according to the recommendations on transitioning individuals in the 2016 Guidelines.
Symptomatic women at any age
Women at any age who have signs or symptoms suggestive of cervical cancer (such as abnormal vaginal bleeding) should have a HPV and LBC co-test and be referred for the appropriate investigation to exclude genital tract malignancy.
Routine cervical screening is not recommended in women under the age of 25 years
However, for women who experienced early sexual activity at a young age (<14 years) and who had not received the HPV vaccine before sexual debut, or those that have been victims of sexual abuse, a single HPV test between 20 and 24 years of age could be considered on an individual basis.
To avoid out of pocket fees for your patients, please familiarise yourself with the Pathology Test Guide for Cervical and Vaginal Testing.
Further information on the Renewal of the National Cervical Screening Program is available at www.cancerscreening.gov.au/cervical
The recently launched “Choose Well, When You’re Worried Sick” campaign aims to educate the public on the medical services available to them at their local GP and elsewhere so they can make the best choice of where to go for treatment. Seeing a GP is often the best health care option and a viable alternative to emergency care, even during the holiday period.
The campaign, run by WA Primary Health Alliance (WAPHA), emphasises to the public that the local emergency department is irreplaceable for some critical things, however, that when it’s not that urgent it will be the GP that can give a person the best medical advice and treatment as they know the patient, their family and their medical history.
With this message WAPHA is addressing potentially preventable hospital admissions where conditions could be managed effectively by a GP, if patients maintained an ongoing relationship with their family doctor. Via social media and in waiting rooms of General Practices and hospitals across WA, the community is encouraged to access the most appropriate health care to ensure the best outcome for both the patient and the system.
People are reminded that attention should still be sought at an emergency department for chest pain, severe headaches they’ve never had before, trouble with speech or movement, a very sick child and in the case of a serious accident or illness. In all these instances choosing the emergency department will help save lives and result in timely, highly skilled emergency care. Most other ailments and injuries can be treated by a GP.
The “Choose Well, When You’re Worried Sick” campaign will run from November to February. For more information people can visit myhealthcareoptions.com.au
One of the components of the renewed National Cervical Screening Program is the introduction of self-collected samples for HPV testing. The self-collection option has been included in the program to encourage women who are aged 30 years or over and have never had a screening test, or who are overdue for testing by at least two years and in either case have declined healthcare provider-collected sample, to participate in cervical screening.
However, self-collection can only be implemented when the laboratory and platform testing processes and equipment attain the various accreditation requirements. This process is still underway. Laboratories are not yet accredited to perform the test and therefore the test is not claimable against the MBS.
Healthcare providers who conduct cervical screening tests are advised not to offer self-collection to eligible women until further notice. All other aspects of the renewed National Cervical Screening Program will go ahead as scheduled on 1 December 2017.
Further information on the Renewal of the National Cervical Screening Program is available at:
A Notifiable Data Breach is a data breach that is likely to result in serious harm to any of the individuals to whom the information relates. A data breach occurs when personal information held by an organisation is lost or subjected to unauthorised access or disclosure.
Examples of a data breach include when:
The Privacy Amendment (Notifiable Data Breaches) Act 2017 established a Notifiable Data Breaches (NDB) scheme in Australia. The NDB scheme requires organisations covered by the Australian Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act) to notify any individuals likely to be at risk of serious harm by a data breach.
This includes ‘Health service providers’ which provide a health service and hold people’s health information. This generally includes general practitioners (GPs), pharmacists, therapists, allied health professionals, gyms and weight loss clinics, and childcare centres among others.
This notice must include recommendations about the steps that individuals should take in response to the data breach. The Australian Information Commissioner (Commissioner) must also be notified.
Organisations will need to be prepared to conduct quick assessments of suspected data breaches to determine if they are likely to result in serious harm.
The NDB scheme will commence on 22 February 2018. It only applies to eligible data breaches that occur on, or after, that date.
For more information and a range of resources, including templates for notifying individuals and the OAIC, visit the OAIC
This number is included in the revised patient handbook, which is being mailed to all Health Care Homes' practices and will be available online.
Reasons for this change are:
The Alcohol and Drug Support Line offers a 24 hour helpline to patients who seek telephone counselling and advice in relation to alcohol and other drug issues:
(08) 9442 5000 or 1800 198 024 (country callers).
In Australia, over 75% of cancers first present in general practice as a result of symptoms. GPs play a key role in the early detection of cancer. GPs can experience challenges in early diagnosis as most GPs may only see between five to 10 new cases of cancer among thousands of consultations per year. Additionally, cancers in general practice often present with subtle non-specific symptoms and most symptoms of cancer can also have more common benign causes.
To assist GPs, Cancer Council Western Australia presents the Find Cancer Early GP Education Project with a new resource guide for GPs on colorectal, lung, prostate and breast cancer. The ‘Find Cancer Early: A Guide for General Practitioners’ resource provides evidence-based approaches to assess cancer symptoms to aid decision-making around further investigation or referral. The guide comes with a short video explaining how to use the guide in clinical practice and a WA Cancer Referral Directory. These resources are also accompanied with a Find Cancer Early Webinar Series. The series of four webinars host specialists presenting on; symptoms that best predict the four common cancers; implications for general practice when diagnosing patients with suspected cancer, and recommended referral pathways.
To access the resources and view the webinar recordings, visit www.cancerwa.asn.au/gp/fce.
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