Practice Connect #57

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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National Cervical Cancer Awareness Week

12-18 November 2018

Have you registered an activity yet?

To support an activity, you can access a range of free resources from the WA Cervical Cancer Prevention Program (WACCPP), including:

  • Print resources, such as brochures, posters and postcards
  • Promotional tools, such as a social media toolkit and bunting kits
  • Activities, such as mindfulness art templates, a quiz activity and a Take 5 activity

All stakeholders that register an activity are also eligible to enter a competition to win a prize.
To register an activity please download the registration form.
For more information please contact the WACCPP on 13 15 56 or


WA End of Life Choices

Palliative Care WA, in partnership with Rural Health West, invite rural-based doctors, nurses and allied health professionals to participate in a webinar on 14 November to discuss the WA End of Life (EOL) Choices Parliamentary Committee Report

The report, released in August, focused on three key areas of care at end of life – advance care planning, palliative care services, and voluntary assisted dying.

This webinar will explore the findings and identify sector priorities for presentation to the WA Government.

The presenters at the webinar are:

  • Dr Alison Parr, Associate Professor and Director Medical Services, St John of God Murdoch Hospital
  • Dr Kirsten Auret, Physician & Associate Professor, Deputy Head of School, Rural Clinical School of WA
Date:   Wednesday, 14 November 2018
Time:   6 - 7.30 pm AWST

Register now
After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the forum.

For more information contact:
Rural Health West:  08 6389 4500 or
Palliative Care WA  1300 551 704


Medicare Benefit Schedule

The 1 November 2018 MBS files (XML, DOC, PDF and ZIP) are now available to download the MBS Online website.

A summary of changes is also available to view.


Accreditation tip – reminder systems

RACGP Standards for general practices 5th ed (GP2.2D)

New to the 5th edition of the Standards is the indicator GP2.2D: Our practices initiates and manages patient reminders. While the concept is not new, and was included in the 4th edition, reminders have now been separated out as a stand-alone indicator, albeit an unflagged (and therefore, not mandatory) one. However, it is acknowledged that, as most practices are likely to have reminder systems in place, it is important that practices know how to manage these systems, separately from the recall system.

Reminders fit into practice procedures that manage preventive health activities. A reminder encourages a patient to return to the practice on a periodic schedule designed to prevent negative or unwanted health outcomes. Examples provided by the RACGP are reminders for high-risk groups for influenza vaccines prior to the start of flu season, and reminders for routine screening such as Pap smears and mammograms.

Reminders are usually set in the patient’s health record before or during a consultation, noting when the patient is due to return to the practice for the relevant activity. In some clinical software systems, a prompt will be displayed when a patient’s health record is opened, informing the clinical team member that the patient is due (or overdue) for the preventive or clinical activity. Clinical software systems are also maturing to enable reminders to be automatically generated at the appropriate time to send an email, text message or letter directly to the patient. For those practices using clinical software that does not yet have this functionality, there is a range of other third-party providers that can be engaged to streamline and automate the reminder process for you.

It is noted, within the Standards, that practices are not required to follow up patients who do not act on reminders, but it is good practice to do so if possible, and to record the sending of the reminder in the patient’s health record. Your practice may also provide its patients with the option of “opting out” of preventive health reminders: if so, ensure that the patient’s decision is confirmed in writing and saved to his or her file.

Useful links:

RACGP Standards for general practices 5th ed Criterion GP2.2D


APNA National Conference 2019

Do you have something to share with primary health care nurses?

Abstracts for the APNA 2019 National Conference are now open.
Year after year, the APNA national conference provides a preeminent platform to recognise and celebrate the best examples of primary healthcare nursing, further building on the expertise and collegiality of the formidable nurse workforce.

The APNA 2019 National Conference will be Building on the Best from 4 to 6 April in charming Adelaide, and this is your opportunity to present to your colleagues on learnings that have meaningful implications for primary healthcare.

APNA is working diligently to develop a broad and thought-provoking program featuring workshops, keynotes, panels and breakfast sessions that are valuable and relevant to the daily practice of primary healthcare nurses. Pivotal to a diverse program are the punchy and pertinent abstract presentations which will explore interventions, projects, case studies and research that impact primary healthcare nursing.

Successful abstracts will showcase innovative and replicable models of care, explore how the profile of nurses' role can be better understood and recognised, touch on policy issues impacting primary healthcare nursing, highlight quality improvement in practice, investigate workforce capacity building, and identify proficient health care across the life of a patient.

Join APNA as we strive to build on the best - make a submission by Monday 12 November and give shape to the conference program with your experience, your insight, your take home message for nurses in primary healthcare. More information:


APNA Nurse Awards

 The APNA Nurse Awards recognise and celebrate the efforts put in by nurses in primary healthcare, and acknowledge exceptional achievements.
Nominate a nurse who has excelled in their work for the APNA Recently Graduated Nurse of the Year or the APNA Nurse of the Year awards.
The application deadline has been extended, and will now close on Monday 12 November, so fill out your nomination form today!


Immunisation update

Following vaccination – what to expect and what to do

An immunisation resource is available and provides patient information on what to expect following vaccinations.
It provides information on:
  • Common reactions that may occur after vaccination
  • What to do at home if a reaction has occurred
  • When to seek medical advice
You can order this resource by contacting National Mailing and Marketing:
Email -
Phone - 02 6269 1080

Quote the order ID number: IT0258, the quantity of the resource you wish to order and provide your delivery address.


HealthPathways update

The HealthPathways WA team recently published their 443rd pathway. The most recently published pathway is: Cellulitis in Adults
Bookmark a Page in HealthPathways
The usual method for bookmarking a specific page in a website doesn't work in HealthPathways. Regular bookmarks will only take you back to the page you entered the site with – usually the home page.
HealthPathways WA have now developed instructions for how to bookmark a specific page on different browsers: To access HealthPathways please contact your WAPHA Primary Health Liaison or email the HealthPathways team at   


My Health Record update

Australia ahead in personal control of electronic records

An international comparison review of digital health record systems has shown that My Health Record consumers in Australia have more ability to personally control their digital health information than in similar countries worldwide.

The Digital Health Evidence Review, released by the Australian Digital Health Agency, brings together studies comparing My Health Record with similar systems across the world, including those in France, the UK, the USA and New Zealand.

With the Australian My Health Record system, people have a choice in how their medical information, such as their tests and scans, are stored and accessed from an international perspective.

“Although many countries have laws that allow users to view their health information, only Australia and a handful of other countries have laws that allow citizens to control who sees their information and request corrections to their own health data,” says Agency Chief Medical Adviser, Professor Meredith Makeham.

Out of the 50 countries surveyed, the Digital Health Evidence Review found:
  • Only Australia and France allow individuals to edit or author parts of their record
  • Only 32 per cent of surveyed countries have legislation in place that allow individuals to request corrections to their data.
  • Only 28 per cent of surveyed countries have legislation that allows individuals to specify which healthcare providers can access their data.
“This review demonstrates that My Health Record empowers consumers to personally control their information, including what’s in it and who can see it,” says Professor Makeham.

My Health Record is an online summary of a person’s key health information. More information can be found on the My Health Record website.

Access the Digital Health Evidence Review.

Selecting secure IT vendors toolkit

A new toolkit to assist healthcare providers to select secure information technology (IT) vendors has been released by the Agency. It is available from our Digital Health Cyber Security Centre webpage: The toolkit consists of:
  • A guide to selecting secure IT Vendors - offers general advice, sample questions and an approach for assessing vendor responses.
  • A vendor Template – can be used to capture vendor responses.
The Agency has developed the toolkit to support health professionals in their discussions with IT vendors about the security aspects of their products and services. The toolkit is not intended to be a comprehensive list of information security requirements. It provides some key discussion items for healthcare providers to start a more in-depth conversation with their IT vendors.


NPS MedicineWise update

 NPS MedicineWise Education - Virtual Visiting Service
NPS MedicineWise are always working to make their independent, evidence based and peer reviewed CPD accessible to GPs. 
They offer a suite of free online resources as well as health professional education delivered direct to GPs through Virtual Visits. 
A Virtual Visit is an accredited, interactive discussion of a therapeutic topic, delivered by videoconference.  Doctors can nominate their preferred time and preferred videoconferencing technology e.g. Skype, Scopia, FaceTime etc.
  • A one-to-one Virtual Visit takes 30mins and can be scheduled at a mutually convenient time – be that before, during or after work hours.
  • Therapeutic topics are accredited (typically 2 Category 2 RACGP points or 1 core point with ACRRM). 
  • All sessions are free.
 The current therapeutic topic is Low Back Pain
GPs and Practice Managers who would like to book an NPS Virtual Visit can book through the NPS MedicineWise website or contact Nicole Humphry at WAPHA on 08 6272 4921 / e-mail

World Antibiotic Awareness Week

12 to 18 November 2018
Antibiotic resistance is a serious worldwide problem, and it’s happening in Australia. The World Health Organization has warned that antibiotic resistance is one of the greatest threats to human health today. However, there are simple actions individuals can take to help stop the spread of antibiotic resistant infections.

This World Antibiotic Awareness Week, NPS MedicineWise has an urgent message to all Australians: It’s time to take antibiotic resistance seriously. During this week NPS will be highlighting the serious issue of antibiotic resistance and empowering health professionals and the community to be part of the solution.  For more information visit the NPS MedicineWise website.


Asthma News for Health Professionals

New asthma and allergy health professionals network

The Health Professionals Network (HPN) is a community of health professionals who provide care to people who have asthma or allergies, and who want to help us improve our resources and services.

We recognise the importance of considering the experiences of stakeholders when planning changes to health services or resources. Community involvement helps improve the understanding and effectiveness of asthma care in Australia for both the community and health professionals.

The HPN allows the National Asthma Council (NAC) to consult the professional community for input and feedback to ensure their perspectives are included throughout NAC’s work, and to ensure that work is relevant, accurate and impactful.

The NAC educates and supports GPs, nurses and pharmacists to provide best-practice care to people with asthma and their carers’ and families. More information is available on the NAC website.


Rural Health West:  Fundraiser Event – Before the Royal Flying Doctor Service

Hear from the contemporaneous diary entries of Dr Joe Holland.  His mercy dash from Perth to Halls Creek, by cattle ship, model T Ford, horse and foot.  

July 29, 1917 - Dr Joe Holland, a West Perth GP, is called to the Murray Street post office to 'consult' with Fred Tuckett, the postmaster at Halls Creek (population 20). 

A stockman, Jimmy Darcy, has been crushed by his fallen horse and has not passed urine for 68 hours. 

Dr Holland diagnoses a ruptured urethra and through morse code, instructs Fred Tuckett, on placing a supra-pubic catheter into Jimmy Darcy's bladder.  The operation, done with a pocket knife, is successful. 

Fred Tuckett says he would be grateful if Dr Holland would come to Halls Creek to take charge of Jimmy Darcy's care.  It took 26 days for Dr John Holland to get to Halls Creek. 

His mission of mercy attracted national attention.  It was an important link in the chain of events that led to the establishment of an outback Aeromedical Service now known as the Royal Flying Doctor Service. 

More information and purchase tickets.

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!


Paediatrics GP Education Event – 3 November

An opportunity to tour the new hospital and get the most up-to-date information on the latest research, presented by Perth Children's Hospital in partnership with WA Primary Health Alliance and HealthPathways WA. 

Date:                 Saturday 3 November 2018
Time:                 Presentations from 8.30am - 4pm (registration from 8am)
Venue:              Perth Children's Hospital, 15 Hospital Ave, Nedlands
Catering:         Morning tea and lunch will be provided
Register:         To register, please click here
RSVP:                26 October, registrations are essential


The Perinatal Anxiety Screening Scale – 7 November

The Women’s Health Strategy & Programs provides training to improve the health and safety of families in WA Health.

Date:                Wednesday, 7 November 2018
Time:                9am - 1.30pm
Venue:             Special Dining Room, KEMH, Subiaco WA 6008
For more information, please visit the North Metropolitan Health Service website. From this page, you can also register by scrolling to the bottom of the page to find Bookings and download a Registration form.


Protecting Brains and Bones: What a GP Needs to Know – 10 November

Presented by Osborne Park Hospital in partnership with WA Primary Health Alliance and HealthPathways WA.

Date:                Saturday 10 November 2018
Time:                Registration from 8am
                            Presentations from 8.30am to 3.30pm
Venue:             University Club, UWA, Crawley WA 6009, free parking available at Entrance 1, Carpark 3
Catering:        Morning tea and lunch will be provided
Register:        To register, please click here
Registrations are essential. RSVP by Friday 2 November 2018.
This event has 40 Category 1 QI&CPD points.

Education sessions include:
  • Early diagnosis and management of Parkinson’s Disease by Dr Barry Vieira
  • Early diagnosis, differential diagnosis and management of dementia by Dr Brendan Foo
  • Acute stroke and TIA, early diagnosis and management by Dr Kien Chan
  • Diagnosis and management of osteoporosis by Professor Charles Inderjeeth
  • Geriatric residential outreach service summary by Dr Charmaine Chua


Telethon Speech and Hearing – 17 November

Talk & Tour morning from leading health experts and a tour of Telethon Speech & Hearing.

Date:               Saturday 17 November 2018
Time:              9am – 11am
Venue:           Telethon Speech & Hearing, 36 Dodd St, Wembley.
Register:       Email Rosemarie Winsor at


ASHM Hepatitis B nursing: Advance management and care

Nurses play a crucial role in ensuring improved health outcomes for people with hepatitis B, through informed clinical management and support of individuals and families. ASHM invites all nurses with an interest in hepatitis B to register for the two-day course - Hepatitis B Nursing Management and Care, developed in partnership with the Australasian Hepatology Association (AHA).

Date:               Friday 16 and Saturday 17 November 2018
Time:              8.30am – 5.00pm
Venue:            Perth TBC
Register:       To regsiter, please click here


Who’s Who in Kwinana and Rockingham – 20 November

General Practitioners, Practice Managers, Nurses, Allied Health and Pharmacists are invited to attend an interactive evening to meet the commissioned WAPHA services in Kwinana and Rockingham. Meet the providers face to face and see what they can offer your patients.

Date:               Tuesday, 20 November 2018
Time:              5.30 - 7.30pm
Venue:            Hotel Clipper, 20 Patterson Rd, Rockingham
Cost:               Free (canapes and drinks provided)
RSVP:             by Tuesday 13 November, click here


Black Dog Institute Perinatal in Practice – 24 November

Learn about the current understanding of perinatal mood disorders and its management, using lecture, case studies and interactive exercises. Thanks to the generosity of CBH Group, Black Dog Institute is offering significantly reduced-cost workshops in regional areas across Western Australia.
Date:                Saturday, 24 November 2018   
Time:                9am – 5pm
Venue:             Masters Builders, 30 Graham St, Albany WA 6330
Cost:                 $50.00
Register:         To register, please click here
These sessions are suitable for Allied Health providers, Nurses, Midwives, Counsellors, GP Registrars, GPs and Psychologists. These sessions have 40 Category 1 RACGP QI&CPD points, 6 hours CPD for Australian Association of Social Workers, and are a CPD Recognised Activity for the Australian College of Midwives.


The Ehlers-Danlos Society Learning Conference Australia – 10 to 11 December

After years of demand and need The Ehlers-Danlos Society is very excited to bring together in Australia leading world experts to discuss the Ehlers-Danlos syndromes and related disorders, including the recently-described hypermobility spectrum disorders.
Date:                Monday, 10 December – Tuesday, 11 December 2018    
Time:                8am – 6pm (Day 1), 7.30am – 6.00pm (Day 2)
Venue:             Curtin University Building 410, Kent Street, Bentley Perth WA 6102
Cost:                  $150 (Day 1), $350 (Day 2) 
Register:         To register, please click here


Health promotion events

Are you 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:  

National Cervical Cancer Awareness Week – 12 to 18 November

The WA Cervical Cancer Prevention Program (WACCPP) is inviting all practices to register an activity in support of National Cervical Cancer Awareness Week (12-18 November 2018).

Activity ideas may include an information display, a presentation about cervical screening, a cervical screening clinic or promotion of cervical screening on stakeholder social media sites.

To support an activity stakeholders can access a range of free resources from the WACCPP, including print resources, promotional tools, activities and display materials.

To register an activity, please download the registration form by clicking here.

For more information please contact the WACCPP on 13 15 56 or, or to view the flyer, please click here.  

PANDA Week (Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Australia) – 11 to 17 November

Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Awareness Week was established by PANDA in 2005. Since then PANDA has been using the Week to speak out about supporting the mental and emotional wellbeing of expecting and new parents, including raising awareness about the signs to look for and where to go to seek support.

Our theme for PANDA Week 2018 is ‘I Wish I Knew’. We know many expecting and new parents are blind-sided by the realities of becoming parents. We know that many parents, looking back, feel that if they had known more and been better able to prepare for some of the challenges they might have been better able to cope.

This includes recognising the signs and symptoms of mental and emotional distress in themselves and others and knowing where to turn to seek support.   

Our PANDA Week campaign theme aims to start conversations about the things parents ‘wish they knew’ before having a baby and encourage people to seek help early if they are struggling. For information on PANDA week and to find resources please the PANDA website.


World COPD Day – 21 November

World COPD Day is an annual global initiative run by the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) to raise awareness about Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and improve COPD care throughout the world.

In 2018, Lung Foundation Australia’s World COPD Day campaign ‘don’t let shortness of breath stop you from living your dreams’ is focused on raising awareness of COPD symptoms, and empowering people with COPD to take control of their condition. Whilst there are many medicines available to treat COPD symptoms, there are also a number of lifestyle habits which can dramatically improve symptoms, and even slow disease progression.

To register an event, please click here.

You can also download resources from the Lung Foundation Australia by clicking here

NPS MedicineWise has a Clinical E-Audit available and the Lung Foundation provides a useful and simple infographic on COPD.


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.