‘Cuddle beds’ bringing some physical comfort to end of life patients. The idea for the cuddle beds was inspired by a mother who was in hospital with her 21 year old son, and it came about because the mother stated that she felt a physical barrier. He was her only child, and she wanted to be there with him at his end of life and was leaning through the bars holding him.
The ‘Cuddle Beds’ help reconnect loved ones both physically and emotionally, so that they feel like they can let go, but they have got that connection at the end of life. Nurses from the Queensland hospital who have worked in palliative care for a long time, say that the physical contact the beds allow and the intimacy was critically important for patients and loved ones.
2019 has seen an increase in measles cases in Australia.
As at 5 April 2019, there had been 83 measles notifications in 2019, compared with 103 for the whole of 2018 and 81 for the whole of 2017.
93.5 per cent of two-year-old children have received two doses of measles vaccine, which means they are now protected against this highly infectious disease. However, we know we need 95 per cent of our community vaccinated to achieve community immunity, to help prevent the spread of measles.
Immunisation saves lives. The measles vaccine is very effective at protecting lives. Two doses of the vaccine are recommended for full protection.
We urge health professional to talk to their patients about their measles immunisation history. In particular, any patients that are intending to go overseas and those born between 1966 and 1994 (some of whom may have had only one dose of vaccine) as they are at higher risk.
Information in the Australian Immunisation Handbook regarding measles vaccination has been updated
Key information about this change:
These changes can be accessed in the Australian Immunisation Handbook, under the ‘Measles’ heading, as well as the ‘Catch up vaccination’ heading.
The latest Viral Hepatitis Mapping Project National Report shows uneven progress towards Hepatitis elimination across Australia. The Viral Hepatitis Mapping Project: National Report 2017 is now available to download or order as a hard copy. Covering data from 2017, the report provides updated estimates broken down by geographic area, including:
The Liberal National Government launched the National Women’s Health Strategy 2020-2030 on 9 April 2019 with more than $50 million in funding to improve women’s health in areas such as ovarian cancer and endometriosis.
Australian women overall enjoy long, healthy lives, with a current average life expectancy of 85 for those born in recent years. This relatively long-life expectancy disguises a large element of avoidable ill-health and inequitable outcomes between different groups. The women’s health strategy for 2020-2030 includes recommendations for action by governments, health professionals and women themselves. It recognises that there is no “average” woman and is inclusive of sexuality and gender identities.
The Government also announced it will provide further funding of $52.2 million to improve women’s health in a number of areas including:
Click here for more information
For existing customers already using PenCS, please check that you have Scheduler 3 installed to be PIP QI ready. If you are unsure, please contact Support on 1800 762 993 or email@example.com.
If your practice is interested in establishing a data-sharing arrangement with WAPHA, further information is available from WAPHA’s website or contact your Primary Health Liaison.
Further updates will be provided through Practice Connect when information becomes available, or you can register for the Incentives News Updates through the Australian Government Department of Human Services
For practices wanting to qualify for the QPI PIP, there’s still time!
NPS MedicineWise can deliver their free, accredited program topics direct to your GP, at a time convenient to them, through a 30 minute video call.
Visit the GP CPD section of the NPS website to see available topics and to book online:
You can access a free online professional development resource for health professionals designed to encourage sensitive and effective conversations with parents about their children’s weight.
By the end of the training course, health professionals will be able to:
Click here to learn more
The team will be visiting the Kimberley from 6 to 24 May 2019 to provide My Health Record support to community and health service providers. The team are travelling to Broome, Halls Creek, Kununurra, Wyndham, Derby, Fitzroy Crossing, Yakanarra, Noonkanbah and Bidyadanga to deliver information, training and general support. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
Many of your patients will benefit from having a digital record with key health information that is accessible to their treating healthcare providers. In particular, this will help people who have complex health conditions, young families, or those who see several healthcare providers. You may wish to discuss with your patient what information should be uploaded to their My Health Record
A shared health summary in a patient’s My Health Record represents their health status at a point in time. It may include information about a patient's medical history, including medical conditions, medicines, allergies and adverse reactions. A patient’s most recent shared health summary is likely to be the first document another healthcare professional views in their patient’s My Health Record.
If you are not the patient's usual provider, you can upload an event summary to share key health information about a significant healthcare event with others involved in the patient’s care . For more information or support visit MyHealthRecord.gov.au or call 1800 723 471.
General Practitioners do not need to gain consent from patients each and every time a document is uploaded to the My Health Record. Pathology and diagnostic imaging reports will still be sent directly to GPs via the usual process.
If a patient has a My Health Record:
The 2019 Commonwealth influenza vaccination resources are now available on their website.
Resources for vaccination providers:
Please note that hardcopy materials, accompanied by correspondence from the Chief Medical Officer, have been mailed to vaccination providers Australia-wide including GPs, Aboriginal Medical Services, and other providers in each state and territory. Additional copies of the resources can be ordered through the Commonwealth’s website via the links above.
Additionally, throughout May 2019, the Commonwealth will be undertaking a media buy using social and online channels to support the uptake of 2019 seasonal influenza vaccines by eligible people under the NIP. To support uptake of vaccination, we are keen to ensure eligible individuals are aware of the Program and take the opportunity to receive the free influenza vaccine.
Department of Health are pleased to advise that the most recent enhancements to the handbook include:
Handbook users are asked to please continue providing feedback to the Department of Health to enable its continual improvement.
You can contact the Department of Health in several ways.
Submit an enquiry or provide feedback using the online form visit
If you are unable to use the form send comments to email@example.com
Call the Switchboard 02 6289 1555 Free call 1800 020 103
The Department of Health Communicable Disease Control Directorate (CDCD) and North Metropolitan Heath Service (NMHS) Metropolitan Communicable Disease Control (MCDC) team are committed to supporting general practice in best practice standards in reporting of all vaccines they administer onto the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR).
Approval to order and utilise government funded vaccines is based on the requirement that all vaccines administered are reported to the AIR, and, when each vaccine order is placed, the provider acknowledges that vaccine management and reporting may be audited.
All vaccine doses discarded due to a cold chain breach, expiry or any other reason should be reported to the population health unit in your region. Click here for more information.
CDCD recently conducted an audit of vaccines ordered by general practice immunisation providers to identify recording practices by general practices. This audit found that most practices had over 95 per cent of vaccine doses accounted for in 2018 through the relevant reporting processes which is commendable.
However, the audit did identify some general practices where there were a significant proportion of vaccines ordered but unaccounted for on AIR. To assist these general practices to identify any problems with transmission of vaccinations to the AIR, or other issues, these practices will be contacted for an opportunity to participate in a survey to assess how they report vaccination to AIR and vaccine wastage. The survey will be reviewed by immunisation coordinators who will then contact them to offer to visit and help where required with vaccine reporting and management processes.
General practices are important immunisation providers and their assistance in reporting of vaccines ordered appropriately is vital to ensure the Department of Health can accurately report immunisation coverage from the AIR and monitor vaccine wastage.
“Great leaders don’t create followers, they create leaders”. Coach your team to develop a vision and mission statement that motivates and empowers them. Make an impact with storytelling, it can inspire change and spread innovation. “Great communication changes people. It changes the way they feel. It changes what they do. The secret to inspiring others is connecting an idea or a vision with a hope or a need. Great communicators leverage their message and story in one way or another to make a connection and compel change.”
Most of us have had that experience with a difficult or angry patient and being able to manage that situation and training our team on how to manage difficult encounters is important. It can be useful to be aware of our own social awareness, to be able to identify our own triggers, identify situations that make us uncomfortable, identify behaviours in others that may make us become negative and know when to change the situation into a positive. In difficult situations it is important to engage with our subconscious responses, manage your body language and gain emotional control. Remain calm, speak slowly in a positive tone effective communication is key to diffusing a situation and turning the focus to actions for solutions.
Some tips when faced with a difficult patient:
Visit our Webinars & Workshops page at www.practiceassist.com.au for more events in your area.
GP Education Summit provides you with the opportunity to attend:
Date: Saturday 4 May 2019
Venue: University Club of WA, Crawley
Register: firstname.lastname@example.org – email name, practice and dietary requirements
The Course in Wound Closure is designed to develop the knowledge and skills required for
nurses, general practitioners and relevant allied healthcare workers to safely assess the need
for, and to perform, wound closure in a variety of settings.
During the two-day workshop topics and activities will include:
Date: Thursday and Friday 27 & 28 June 2019
Time: 8:45am – 4.30pm
Venue: Technology Park Function Center, Bentley
Date: Thursday and Friday 21 & 22 November 2019
Time: 8:45am – 4.30pm
Venue: Technology Park Function Center, Bentley
Topic: Learn how to engage your clients/patients for better health & wellbeing outcomes
Information packed and interactive, the Better Questions workshop will allow you to:
Date: Thursday and Friday 21 and 22 November 2019
Time: 8:45am – 4.30pm
Venue: Technology Park Function Center, Bentley
This is the fifth year of the popular Paediatric Masterclass for General Practice at the Queensland Children’s Hospital, which is fast becoming a key annual event for general practice education in Queensland.
The one-day Masterclass offers informative and interactive sessions on a range of child health topics delivered by QCH paediatricians and subspecialists.
Date: Saturday 12 October 2019
Venue: Queensland Children’s Hospital
You can also view all health promotion activities for the year by visiting Practice Assist’s health calendar: https://bit.ly/2Wdv8h8
Medication Dependence Prevention Month is an annual event to raise awareness about preventing medication harms and finding community support. At the moment in Australia, more people are dying due to the use of some prescription pain and sedative medications than on our roads.
Each year Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA) chooses a theme and coordinates preparation and distribution of World Asthma Day materials and resources. GINA also maintains the World Asthma Day Internet Headquarters, where materials and resources are posted for downloading and a complete listing of activities around the world is constantly updated.
The first World Asthma Day, in 1998, was celebrated in more than 35 countries in conjunction with the first World Asthma Meeting held in Barcelona, Spain. Participation has increased with each World Asthma Day held since then, and the day has become one of the world’s most important asthma awareness and education events.
Looking for ideas the visit World Asthma Day Activity ideas
National Palliative Care Week is an annual awareness raising week organised by Palliative Care Australia.
The theme for National Palliative Care Week 2019 is ‘What matters most?’ and it will be held from the 19 - 25 May 2019.
National Palliative Care Week is a national week supported by the Department of Health to raise awareness and understanding about palliative care in the Australian community.
The theme addresses the need for Australians to plan ahead for their end-of-life care and discuss it with their loved ones and health professionals.
Dying to Talk Resources
Use these two resources – the online Dying to Talk Discussion Starter and Dying to Talk Card Game to help work out what matters most to you, alternatively visit www.dyingtotalk.org.au for more information.
This year’s theme is “Active Ageing” encouraging all Australians to move more and age better!
Everyone should exercise regularly throughout all stages of life. Regular physical activity helps to maintain independence and quality of life, reduces the risk of chronic diseases, and improves mood and mental health.
During the campaign, there will be free events, competitions and resources to help every Australian, regardless of age, to Exercise Right.
Click to view the toolkit