Dr Ric Milner

Studies are increasingly showing that appropriate exercise is a valuable aid in helping reduce the risk of acquiring cancer, and improving outcomes during and after treatment, writes Dr Ric Milner*. Following diagnosis with metastatic prostate cancer, Dr Milner began “to explore the benefits of exercise and the appropriate application of exercise with cancer”.

Ric Milner’s personal story can be read here.

Although it is relatively early days in assessing the value of exercise as a therapy for cancer and treatment related conditions, there are significant signs that the body can, and generally does, react positively to appropriate physical activity.

In 2004 and 2009 a large exhibition of the work of Aboriginal artists was held at Lismore City Hall. Inspired by local doctors working in Aboriginal Medical Services, the initiative was highly successful on many fronts. There were sales of more than $50,000 for each of these exhibitions, which provided income for the participating artists as well as some profit that could be directed to further develop the local Aboriginal art industry and acquire some for equipment for the Casino AMS.

The years have passed, and the need to do more in the field of Indigenous art in this area remains pressing. In response a number of partners have come together to support an Art on Bundjalung Country event, including the NC Primary Health Network, Arts Northern Rivers, Lismore Regional Art Gallery, Bulgarr Ngaru and the University Centre for Rural Health North Coast.

The idea is for established Aboriginal artists to conduct a number of workshops for emerging artists living on Bundjalung Country from which work will be selected for an exhibition at the new Lismore Regional Gallery in December. The work will be for sale. Workshops will be held in Lismore, Brunswick Heads, Maclean, Casino, Nimbin and Tweed Heads. The art forms will include painting, basket weaving, installations, and ceramics.

Jan Steen [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The rising demand for costly after-hours home visits by medical practitioners is impacting negatively on the federal health budget and attracting criticism from various quarters, including the Australian Medical Association.

The increase in Medicare payments for the two main categories of after-hours home visits are now the subject of close examination by the government’s clinician-led Medicare Benefits Schedule Review Taskforce, which in its recent interim report made several key recommendations, including:

  • Restricting the use of the high value urgent after-hours items so that medical deputising service doctors and practitioners working predominantly in the after-hours period are excluded from billing these items
  • Providing a clearer definition of what is considered to be urgent for the purposes of the MBS urgent after-hours items, including changing the requirement to ‘urgent assessment’ as opposed to ‘urgent treatment’ 
  • Removing the current right of patients to make an urgent after-hours appointment two hours before the commencement of the after-hours period.



Passwords are the bane of our lives. Creating them is difficult enough. Remembering 50 of them for all your websites is an impossible task. Most people have three or four which they recycle.

This is not a good practice. If a hacker cracks your password, they gain access to many of your online accounts. You may not care particularly if they are unimportant sites, but access to these “disposable” accounts provides a gateway for hackers to escalate access to your other online services.

NeuroMoves exercise physiologist Sam Mitchell with the RT300 Functional Electrical Stimulation Ergometer that assists with arm and leg rehabilitation for patients with illnesses such as paraplegia, quadriplegia and stroke.

Stroke survivor Murray Shergold, a chipper 70-year-old from Woodburn, was told by specialists in Brisbane that he should not expect to ever walk again after suffering a stroke.

Now, just months later and after weekly sessions on the RT300 Functional Electrical Stimulation Ergometer in the NeuroMoves gym at Southern Cross University Health Clinic, Murray is beginning to walk without a stick.

To say he’s pleased is putting it mildly, and the same goes for his wife Jean, who runs a local nursing service as well as an orchid business.

“I’ve got energy and I’m continuing to get better,” Murray said at the official opening of the facility that has been operating since last March.

“The difference has been incredible,” Jean Shergold told GPSpeak. “We thought he’d be wheelchair-bound for the rest of his life, but the progress has been absolutely amazing.”