Do hospitals and hospital based specialists appreciate General Practice?

Karen Price

First of all let me precede my comments with a caveat drawn from social media, hashtag #notallspecialists.

I have on occasion heard hospital based specialists be incredulous that GPs do not have routine access to the eTG (therapeutic guidelines) and the inevitable “GPs should…..” statement followed.  It seems that those who made the observation were blissfully unaware of the thousands of dollars an eTG subscription would cost the average General Practice in an economic environment of underfunding of primary care. Most hospital based specialists appear to have no appreciation of the cost of doing GP medical business.    Another wondered whether the education provided to GPs should be at a final year medical student level?  I subsequently wondered if our fellowship was invisible.   I hear from those in my family who are in the hospital environment how often the hidden curriculum of “Just a GP” comes up in informal hospital settings and I wonder why?

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Letter to GPs

John Deery, Chair, AGPA

Some of you may be wondering why AGPA wrote directly to the profession last month calling for an end to the disrespect of General Practice by successive governments. The simple answer is that it was overdue.

The reality is that running a GP practice in Australia has become increasingly problematical in the face of issues such as the Medicare freeze, changes to rebate rates in various geographical areas, restrictions on the GP workforce, and the attempts to cut a sweetheart deal with pathology on co-location rentals. The cavalier attitude adopted to the legitimate fears over access to patient and practice data inherent in the PIP QI arrangements is just the latest example of a failure to listen to General Practice.

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PIP QI – AGPA makes progress

The PIP QI program went live on 1 August 2019.

The AGPA and a group of concerned Doctors reviewed the data collection arrangements for the program and determined that there were significant privacy issues for patient and Practice information.

The Department of Health has now released a new set of guidelines which addresses many of the issues raised by the AGPA.

A win for common sense.

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Train GPs in the Bush for the Bush: Deputy PM

By Michael McCormack*
It’s simply not good enough. That is your first thought when you meet the people affected by Australia’s rural doctor shortage.
The people who travel for hours on country roads or who wait for weeks or even longer just to see a doctor. Those who do their best – who rally local business communities to help, who open their arms to a new recruit and make them welcome – just to make sure the doctor stays. Yet this is the reality in many country communities around Australia. Continue reading “Train GPs in the Bush for the Bush: Deputy PM”

Welcome to our first newsletter for 2018

Member Communication and Practice Support

As we mentioned in our December newsletter we have been working to try to improve communication and support our members who are spread across the country.

In February we trialled an online interactive seminar (read Webinar you can hold a discussion in) for the Queensland members and some other Queensland practice owners. The topic was Changes to the Cybersecurity Legislation and the Requirements for Reporting Security Breaches. We had a very good presentation from Redfish and a great discussion. Continue reading “Welcome to our first newsletter for 2018”

Department to look at pathology blow-out and GP conduct

The rising number of tests and scans at major clinics and medical centres is under investigation by the Federal Department of Health, according to a report in The Australian. It will focus on whether the cause is inappropriate financial arrangements. The department will look at compliance and whether GPs are getting unlawful kick-backs to request pathology services, especially where the services are co-located. Continue reading “Department to look at pathology blow-out and GP conduct”

Concern over charges to private health funds

The Federal Government is very concerned about the growing practice of private health insurance being charged by public hospitals for treatments that should be free, according to the Minister for Health, Greg Hunt. Figures released (Dec 2017) by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) show that state governments and hospitals are continuing to actively encourage patients to use their private health insurance to boost hospital revenue. Continue reading “Concern over charges to private health funds”