Practice Connect #45

Welcome to Practice Connect, a fortnightly update for practice managers, nurses and practice administration staff on relevant issues, upcoming events and education.

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Immunisation update 


Online Influenza module 2018 now live 

The WA Department of Health Communicable Disease Control Directorate (CDCD) have updated the influenza immunisation module for 2018.

This module has been developed to support immunisation providers who wish to undertake a refresher in this topic. The online module provides the user with general influenza information and also reflects recent changes in influenza immunisation and now attracts RACGP CPD points. 

Access this free module here within the 'Online Immunisation Update' tab. 


Educational videos - 2018 Influenza vaccination during pregnancy 

Despite the influenza vaccine being free for pregnant women under the National Immunisation Program, vaccination rates remain low in this group. To maintain efforts in promoting the importance of influenza vaccination in this cohort, this year the Department has refreshed their promotional videos (one for health professionals and two for consumers) to incorporate footage of the Chief Nursing and Midwifery Office, Adjunct Professor Debra Toms, in addition to existing footage of the Chief Medical Officer, Professor Brendan Murphy. The videos highlight the risks associated with influenza during pregnancy and the benefits of receiving an influenza vaccine. 

For health professionals:  For pregnant women:  The WA Department of Health is also promoting these videos through social media channels including Facebook and Twitter and on the Department's immunisation website


National Cervical Screening Program (NCSP) newsletter and updates 

A reminder that on 1 December 2017 changes were made to the National Cervical Screening Program (NCSP). The Pap test was replaced by the human papillomavirus (HPV) Cervical Screening Test. Routine cervical screening is now recommended for people aged 25 to 74 years. Please remember that Pap tests are no longer eligible for Medicare rebates, and if this is requested, patients may be charged.

To order pathology tests under the NCSP, including the Cervical Screening Test, provider should follow the naming conventions detailed in the Pathology Test Guide for Cervical and Vaginal Testing. This can be found here

Important updates and information for providers are regularly published in the NCSP monthly newsletter. This includes links to comprehensive patient resources and promotional material. Providers are encouraged to subscribe by emailing the NCSP mailbox at, and include: 
  • Subject ATTC&A
  • Your contact information (name and email) 


My Health Record update 

Secondary use of My Health Record data; Framework informed by public consultation 

The Department of Health has developed a framework to guide the secondary use of My Health Record Data, informed by a national public consultation process. A Community Consultation Summary Report was developed to reflect the findings of the process.

An Implementation Plan will be developed during the second half of 2018 by the Department of Health, the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and the Australian Digital Health Agency in collaboration with key stakeholders and project partners. It will be published on the Department of Health’s website.

Consumers will have the opportunity to opt out of having their My Health Record data used for secondary purposes.

To find out more, visit here


HealthPathways update 

HealthPathways have now published 394 pathways. The most recently published pathways are:

Ophthalmology Pathways

The HealthPathways team have engaged with Lions Outback Vision and the Indigenous Eye Health team at the University of Melbourne to develop several ophthalmology pathways. The below pathways are a valuable resource for GPs to refer to in their practice and include both clinical and referral information. Specific advice and service information for Aboriginal people and people from culturally and linguistically diverse communities is also available in these pathways.


HealthPathway CPD Events 

Registration for these events is essential for catering purposes. Each event has 40 Category One QI&CPD points attached.

Rockingham General Hospital GP Education Event: Chronic Disease – 26 May

Presented by Rockingham Peel Group and Rockingham General Hospital in partnership with WA Primary Health Alliance and HealthPathways WA.

Date:                    Saturday, 26 May 2018
Time:                    8.30am – 3.30pm (8.00am – Registration)
Venue:                 Rockingham General Hospital, Education Centre Lecture Theatre, Elanora Drive, Cooloongup
Catering:            Morning tea and lunch will be provided 
Register:            RSVP by Friday 18 May 2018. To register, please visit here

Fremantle Hospital GP Education Event: Vulnerable Minds, Fragile Bones & Planned Ageing – 9 June

Presented by South Metropolitan Health Service and Fremantle Hospital in partnership with WA Primary Health Alliance and HealthPathways WA.

Date:                  Saturday, 9 June 2018
Time:                  8.30am – 3.30pm (8.00am – Registration)
Venue:               Fremantle Hospital, Alma Street, Fremantle WA 6160
Catering:          Morning tea and lunch will be provided 
Register:          RSVP by Friday 28 May 2018. To register, please visit here

Armadale Health Services GP Education Event: Mental Health – 23 June

Presented by East Metropolitan Health Service and Armadale Kalamunda Group in partnership with WA Primary Health Alliance and HealthPathways WA.

Date:                   Saturday, 23 June 2018
Time:                   8.30am – 3.30pm (8.00am – Registration)
Venue:                Armadale Health Service, 3056 Albany Hwy, Mount Nasura
Catering:           Morning tea and lunch will be provided 
Register:           RSVP by Friday 15 June 2018. To register, please visit here


NPS MedicineWise update 

Improve data quality for accreditation 

The MedicineInsight program from NPS MedicineWise helps your practice achieve accreditation standards by highlighting gaps in your clinical data. This allows you to plan for action on where and what you need to improve for better patient outcomes and accreditation. Customised searches can be saved to a dashboard, allowing you to monitor your practice progress over time. MedicineInsight also supports your chronic disease management and medication management activities. 

MedicineInsight is a free quality improvement program developed and managed by NPS MedicineWise with funding from the Australian Government Department of Health. MedicineInsight allows GPs to reflect on their own patterns of prescribing and patient care, and compare these with other GPs in their practice. These can be benchmarked at local, regional and national levels. Participating practices are offered customised quality improvement activities that support alignment with best practice and identify key areas for improvement.

If you would like to learn more about MedicineInsight, there is a one minute video overview on the NPS website here

Alternatively, you can contact Nicole Humphry, NPS Coordinator at WAPHA on (08) 6272 4921 and book a practice visit to learn more about what MedicineInsight has to offer your practice. 



Digital Health update 

Practices are encouraged to update to the latest version of CAT 

PenCS have released CAT 4.10.1 to ClickOnce. This upgrade contains: 
  • Digital Health > SHS Uploads by PIP Quarterly Period. This allows practices to enter their SWPE count and monitor their upload requirement to be able to claim the PIP. More details are available here.
  • New reports have been added to the Daily CAT view which will enable many additional prompts to be created for display in Topbar: STI Screening, Co-morbidities, My Health Record status, Immunisations (Fluvax, Pneumococcal, Shingles). If you are not familiar with CAT Plus prompts and how to create them please check the user guide
  • New filters have been added:
Conditions filter > Renal impairment: Kidney Transplate, Dialysis 
Medications filter > Antidiabetics: option to filter for patients taking any oral OR injectables 
  • All Re-identify Reports now include the age of the patient in the DOB column in brackets after the date of birth. The format is DD/MM/YYYY (99)
  • Smoking status report can be filtered by date range for the date of the last smoking assesssment
  • The Indicated Mental Health Report in Cleansing CAT will now exclude any MH diagnosis in the patient's record that is captured by CAT 
Please note that the information on CAT4 4.10.1 MSI Installer and the scheduler release will be available soon. For any assistance, please call PenCS Support at 1800 762 993. 


New Codeine posters to download and share 

People who take medicines containing codeine are changing the way they manage pain. Since the 1st February 2018, these medicines are no longer available over the counter. To assist with the transition, the National Rural Health Alliance has developed information for health professionals and health consumers.

To access the three posters available to download, print and display click here



Doubling of spirometry rebate welcome news for GPs

The Australian Government Department of Health has accepted calls from the MBS Review Taskforce to a near doubling of the MBS rebate for post-bronchodilator spirometry to improve the detection of serious respiratory conditions. 

From November 2018 onwards, the rebate for item 11506 will rise to approximately $40. GPs will also be able to make referrals for Medicare-funded sleep studies for patients with a high pre-test probability of moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnoea. 

For more information and to subscribe to updates like this, viist here


Education and Training 

Visit our Webinars & Workshops page at for more events in your area.

These events are often in high demand, so we recommend registering as soon as possible so you don't miss out! 



Diagnostic Reports and My Health Record - 30 May 

The Australian Digital Health Agency will be holding a national update ‘Diagnostic Reports and My Health Record’ webinar for healthcare providers. This webinar will provide healthcare professionals with an update on progress towards sharing of diagnostic reports with the My Health Record. Staff of pathology labs and radiology practices in particular are encouraged to attend.

Date:               Wednesday, 30 May 2018
Time:               11.00am – 12.00pm OR 4.30pm – 5.30pm
Venue:            Live via webcast
Cost:                Free
Register:       To register for 11.00am – 12.00pm, please visit here
                           To register for 4.30pm – 5.30pm, please visit here


Maternal vaccination: The knowns and unknowns - 31 May 

This seminar will review the rationale and evidence for existing vaccines currently recommended for pregnant women in many countries, provide an overview of new vaccines being developed for future implementation in the obstetrical population, discuss uptake and determinants of immunisation during pregnancy, highlight safety monitoring issues and discuss considerations for high-risk pregnant women.

Date:                    Thursday, 31 May 2018
Time:                    9.00am – 10.00am
Venue:                 Live via webcast
Cost:                      Free
Register:            To register, please visit here



Medicine in Residential Aged Care Seminar - 31 May 

Educational aims of this seminar include identification of common geriatric syndromes such as dementia, incontinence, falls and polypharmacy in Residential Aged Care facilities, discuss simple strategies to manage the geriatric syndromes and describe common geriatric medicine challenges in RACF. Health professionals in aged care such as GPs, nursing, allied health & management would find this seminar interesting and topical.

Date:                Thursday, 31 May 2018
Time:                8.30am – 5.30pm
Venue:             Fiona Stanley Hospital Education Building, Lecture Theatre G.1, Robin Warren Drive, Barry Marshall Parade, Murdoch WA 6150
Cost:                 $150 for general; $70 for concession
Register:        To register, please visit here


Less Common Cancers Series - 5 June 

This ‘I Wanna Be Your Liver – Hepatitis B and Hepatocellular Carcinoma’ workshop will cover all aspects of Hepatitis B, through to Hepatocellular Carcinoma. Learning outcomes include describing epidemiology of HBV in Australia and WA, identifying priority populations for HBV testing and applying the 5A’s model to patients with risk taking behaviours or from high prevalence countries, describing the treatment options for patients and the GPs role in management and many more.

Date:                   Tuesday, 5 June 2018
Time:                   6.30pm – 8.30pm 
Venue:                The Bendat Parent & Community Centre, 36 Dodd Street, Wembley
Cost:                     Free
Register:            To register, please visit here



Hepatitis B: What you need to know - 7 June 

This evening update will benefit GPs, nurses, pharmacists, mid-wives, dieticians, and other allied health professionals who provide services to CALD population. This course will enable participants to know who to test and how to interpret test results, improve the outcome of patients by early diagnosis, follow up and appropriate management (including vaccination), describe the intervention points throughout the natural history of HBV and identify the different treatment options available for people living with chronic hepatitis B. This course will be presented by Dr Adam Doyle Hepatologist, Royal Perth Hospital.

Date:                    Thursday, 7 June 2018
Time:                    6.30pm – 9.00pm
Venue:                 Fraser Suites Perth, 10 Adelaide Terrace, Perth WA 6004
Cost:                      Free
Register:             To register, please visit here



Foundations of General Practice Nursing Workshops - 8 to 9 June ​

Places are still available for APNA’s acclaimed Foundations of General Practice Nursing Workshop in Perth. This workshop is not only for those new to general practice – it’s a great refresher for nurses looking for an update. You won’t want to miss these two days to engage, learn, and connect with your peers, all while achieving 12 hours of essential CPD.

Date:                Friday, 8 June – Saturday, 9 June 2018
Time:               8:45am – 5.00pm
Venue:            Cliftons Perth – Parmelia House, 191 St Georges Terrace, Perth
Cost:                $350 for APNA members; $450 for non-members 
Register:        To register, please visit here



General Practitioner, Medical Officer and Practice Nurse Rheumatic Heart Disease Symposium - 12 to 20 June 

The WA Country Health Service Rheumatic Heart Disease Control Program and Rheumatic Heart Disease Australia invite Medical Practitioners, Practice Nurses and Medical Officers to attend these evening symposiums.

Time:              6.30pm – 8.30pm
Cost:               Free

Date Region Venue
Tuesday, 12 June 2018 Broome Mangrove Hotel, 47 Carnarvon Street, Broome
Wednesday, 13 June 2018 Kalgoorlie Quality Inn Railway, 57 Forrest Street, Kalgoorlie
Monday, 18 June 2018 Port Hedland Ibis Hotel, Cnr Lukis and McGregor Streets, Port Headland
Wednesday, 20 June 2018 Geraldton Geraldton Universities Centre, Block B 33 Onslow Street

To register your interest in attending, please email with your name, organisation, role and contact email and we will contact you with further information.



Living and Leading the Change Process - 14 June ​

This session presented by Roz Lindsay from Engaging Potential aims to introduce key concepts associated with overcoming people’s resistance to change. Through a mix of concepts, practical methods and discussions we will explore the brain’s role in change, the barriers to implementing change and ways to address these barriers. This activity is accredited for 8 Category Two QI&CPD points. For more information, see flyer here.

Date:                    Thursday, 14 June 2018
Time:                    4.00pm – 8.00pm  
Venue:                 WAPHA Offices Level 2, 2-5, 7 Tanunda Drive, Rivervale 6103
Cost:                      Free
Register:             To register, please visit here



Recalls and Reminders Clinical Software Training - 25 & 28 June 

Presented by Katrina Otto from Train IT Medical and funded by WAPHA, this free face-to-face clinical software training workshop is available to practices who are using Best Practice and MedicalDirector. Learning objectives include design an effective recall and reminder system, use actions for preventive health activities, generate patient recall and reminder lists, implement systems for Immunisation and Cancer Screening recalls and reminders, and many more.

Participants have a choice of attending one of the following two sessions:

Best Practice

Date Time Location
Monday, 25 June 2018 9.00am – 12.00pm Aloft Hotel, Tactic 4 Room, 27 Rowe Avenue, Rivervale 6103
Thursday, 28 June 2018 1.00pm – 4.00pm WAPHA Offices, Level 2, 2-5, 7 Tanunda Drive, Rivervale 6103

To register, please visit here


Date Time Location
Monday, 25 June 2018 1.00pm – 4.00pm Aloft Hotel, Tactic 4 Room, 27 Rowe Avenue, Rivervale 6103
Thursday, 28 June 2018 9.00am – 12.00pm WAPHA Offices, Level 2, 2-5, 7 Tanunda Drive, Rivervale 6103

To register, please visit here


Diabetes WA Aboriginal Health Forum - 27 June

The Diabetes WA Aboriginal Health Forum: Working together today for a stronger tomorrow forum will showcase innovative programs and initiative, the latest diabetes research and will feature keynote speakers from across Australia. For more information, please see flyer here.

Date:                    Wednesday, 27 June 2018
Time:                    9.00am – 4.00pm (8.30am – Registrations)
Venue:                 Technology Park Function Centre, 2 Brodie Hall Drive, Bentley WA 6102
Cost:                     Free
Register:            To register, please visit here


Health promotion events in May 

Is your practice looking for a health promotion activity for your practice?  Each edition we provide a list of upcoming health promotion activities for the coming months along with resources and contact details.

You can also view all health promotion activities for the year by visiting Practice Assist’s health calendar.

Lung Health Awareness Month - May 

May is Lung Health Awareness Month with one in four Australians affected by lung disease. However many people tend to ignore the signs and symptoms, often not doing anything about it far too long. 

Encourage your patients to take care of their lung health and make it a priority by encouraging them to complete Lung Foundation Australia's two-minute online lung health check. 

You can also find other resources including posters for your practice and a checklist to remind patients of the possible symptoms of lung disease here.

Find out more about lung health by visiting Lung Foundation Australia.

World No Tobacco Day - 31 May 

World No Tobacco Day 2018 will focus on the impact tobacco has on the cardiovascular health of people worldwide. Tobacco use is an important risk factor for the development of coronary heart disease, stroke, and peripheral vascular disease.

Despite the devastating harms of tobacco to heart health, and the availability of solutions to reduce tobacco-related death and disease, knowledge among large sections of the public that tobacco is one of the leading causes of CVD is low.

More on World No Tobacco Day here:

Women's Health Survey 2018 

The annual Jean Hailes women’s health survey is now underway. This online survey is one of the country’s most revealing insights into the health needs and behaviours of women in Australia. The results of this survey will support Jean Hailes’ response to emerging issues in women’s health and the creation of content for free resources such as their digital gateway and our annual Women’s Health Week campaign. Help shape the future of women’s health in Australia by completing the survey below.

Survey link:


Patient group education programs for Type 2 Diabetes 

Diabetes WA provide a range of group education sessions for patients living with Type 2 diabetes, throughout regional Western Australia and metropolitan Perth. 

The SMART programs are a range of short group education sessions designed to help better manage patient's Type 2 diabetes. Bookings are essential, and attendance at all of the SMART programs is free for NDSS Registrants and Diabetes WA members.

The group education calendar can be found at

Bookings can be made online into programs using the interactive calendar, or by contacting Diabetes WA on telephone 1300 001 880.


Practice Assist acknowledges and pays respect to the Traditional Owners and Elders of this country and recognises the significant importance of their cultural heritage, values and beliefs and how these contribute to the positive health and wellbeing of the whole community.

While the Australian Government Department of Health has contributed to the funding of this website, the information on this website does not necessarily reflect the views of the Australian Government and is not advice that is provided, or information that is endorsed, by the Australian Government. The Australian Government is not responsible in negligence or otherwise for any injury, loss or damage however arising from the use of or reliance on the information provided on this website.