General Topics

Budget 2017: Response from the Australian General Practice Alliance

The Chair of the Australian General Practice Alliance (AGPA), Dr John Deery, welcomes the announcement by the Minister for Health, Greg Hunt, that the flawed capping of rentals for accredited Pathology collection centres in medically owned health facilities will not proceed.

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Simple primary-care reforms ‘could save $320m’

Simple reforms to Australia’s health system could help save more than $320 million a year on avoidable hospital admissions and provide better care for people with diabetes, asthma, heart disease and other chronic conditions, according to a Grattan Institute report.

The primary health system, Australians’ first point of contact for health care, was designed in and for another era and is now failing in the prevention and management of chronic disease, the heaviest burden on today’s health system.

The government spends more that $1 billion each year on planning, coordinating and reviewing chronic disease management, yet many people with chronic conditions do not receive best care and end up having hospital stays that could have been avoided with better care.

More details and the full report are here

Medicare income and job satisfaction in decline

Medicare revenue and job satisfaction for GPs are falling, according to a Melbourne University report.

Medicare revenue per full-time-equivalent GP has declined in real terms since the Medicare fee freeze in 2013.

Reported GP job satisfaction and work–life balance have deteriorated since 2013. This suggests reduced morale which, if continued, could compound existing slow growth and dif culties in recruitment and retention in the sector.

The full report is here

Health Minister replies to pathology rent concern

The “disillusioned” GPs from the Lockridge Medical Center in WA have received a reply from the Minister for Health after expressing concerns about the plans to artificially cap rental rates for co-located pathology centres. The original letter is here and the reply is here.

 You can download a membership application form by clicking here.

AGPA Annual Congress 2017 – GP Crisis Meeting

The congress, at Stamford Plaza Sydney Airport. 4 March 2017. 9.30am to 5pm, was officially opened by Dr Mike Freelander MP, Member for Macarthur. Dr John Deery, Chair of the Australian GP Alliance, then gave an overview of the AGPA and its aims. The congress then held a number of workshops over three sessions to discuss issues relevant to General Practice in Australia:

Session 1 : Political Traction, Improving Professional Standing, Providing Business Support

Session 2: Securing Income Streams, Pathology Rent Controversy, Dealing with your PHN

Session 3: Patient Centered Medical Home vs HCH Funding Model, Rural Issues, eHealth

Resolutions developed in each of the sessions were then presented to the congress. They will be refined and used to assist the Board to develop the strategic direction for the Australian GP Alliance over the coming months.

 You can download a membership application form by clicking here.