Sir Michael Marmot

From the first day of Spring 2016, Australian audiences will be able to access a valuable series of talks by the distinguished President of the World Medical Association, Professor Sir Michael Marmot.
The annual Boyer Lectures, to be broadcast on ABC Radio National, will be the 57th of the 4-part weekly series prepared and delivered by distinguished people with a close Australian connection.
While born in England, Prof Marmot was schooled at Sydney Boys High, and later graduated from the medicine program at The University of Sydney. He is Director of the Institute of Health Equity, a leading researcher on health inequality issues for more than three decades, a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences, an Honorary Fellow of the British Academy, and an Honorary Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health of the Royal College of Physicians.
He was a member of the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution for six years and in 2000 was knighted for services to epidemiology and the understanding of health inequalities.
Sir Michael’s Boyer Lectures will explore the challenges faced by communities in solving issues around health inequality. The first 2016 Boyer Lecture will be delivered in Sydney on Thursday 1 September 2016, and broadcast on RN (FM frequency 96.9 in the NSW Northern Rivers).
Headed Fair Australia: Social Justice and the Health Gap, the lectures will be -
Lecture 1: Health inequalities and the causes of the causes
Lecture 2: Give every child the best start
Lecture 3: Living and working
Lecture 4: Social justice and health—making a difference

Frozen rebates. They sound like they could be a new dessert - cold, quite tasteless but certainly not fattening. Some thought they were just a passing fad but it looks like there here to stay.

As a result many general practitioners will be disappointed by the return of the Coalition. Health financing was one of the key areas of difference between the two major parties in the recent election.

Bulk billing rates are at record highs. To the economists of the Liberal Party this means the rebates are at least adequate. The market has spoken and in these times of austere government spending it would be reckless to increase them.

RDAA President, Dr Ewen McPhee

Responding to a report in the Australian (9 Aug) that the Federal Health Department seeks the removal of 41 health roles, including GPs, from the skilled occupations list for visas, the Rural Doctors Association of Australia (RDAA) says such calls should be part of Australia's future medical workforce considerations.

It also wants an ‘urgently required’ National Rural Generalist Framework to get more Australian-trained doctors to the rural and remote communities that need them.

Iron deficiency is a common problem in general practice. Traditionally it has been treated with oral tablets, intramuscular injections or intravenous administration. Each of these modalities have their own problems.

While tablets are first line therapy, they take several months to work and are associated with significant gastro-intestinal side effects. Intramuscular injections are painful and may lead to staining of the skin. Previous intravenous formats of iron have been associated with serious side effects during administration, most notably anaphylaxis.

Rapid replenishment of blood and iron stores is needed for pre-operative patients where blood loss during or prior to surgery can be expected. Bowel surgery, gynaecological operations and major joint replacements are those where haemoglobin and iron replacement needs pre-operative optimisation.

The Federal MP for Page, Kevin Hogan (Centre), with his wife Karen, and Paul Murphy, manager of The Winsome & Lismore Soup Kitchen, at Homelessness Connect day.

I would like to congratulate our North Coast Primary Health Network, which has been selected as one of four lead sites across Australia to implement the new $192 million suicide prevention program. This is exactly what I have been advocating to reduce suicide in our community.

Any suicide is tragic and unfortunately we have far too many in our community. Under this new programme, the North Coast PHN will receive millions of dollars in additional resources to develop localised methods to help prevent suicides.