Should optometrists be calling themselves doctors?

use of title doctor for optometrists

The Optometry Board of Australia has recently reminded optometrists that there is no provision in the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law that prohibits a practitioner from using titles such as “doctor”, but has given a warning on the potential to mislead or deceive if the title isn’t applied in a clear manner. The Board has [Read More…]

Futures in Medicine Indigenous Scholarship open now

House Call Doctor indigenous scholarship

The House Call Doctor is inviting Indigenous students to apply to Futures in Medicine Indigenous Scholarship. The scholarship is aimed at supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students along the journey to their career in medicine. The scholarship will give $10,000 to one Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander student to go towards their academic costs [Read More…]

Australian Dental Industry Association wins Association of the Year

ADIA wins association of the year

On 17 July 2017, the Australian Dental Industry Association (ADIA) was named the Association of the Year by Association Forums. This award is presented to an association that has distinguished itself by achieving all-round excellence. The award acknowledges the outstanding contribution of ADIA to influence government decision making, deliver world-class exhibitions and publish meaningful market [Read More…]

Submissions for public consultation on midwifery standards of practice close 25th August

midwifery standards of practice consultation

The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) has collaborated with Deakin University to develop the midwife standards for practice in Australia. As part of the project, the current national competency standards for the midwife (2006) will be reviewed as it may not compatible with the continuous development of the role and scope of practice [Read More…]

Calls for collaborative work between general practitioners and pharmacists

GPs and pharmacists working together

There are many positive outcomes for Australia by optimising the role of pharmacists, especially within collaborative healthcare frameworks, said the peak body for pharmacists, the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA). The statement was made in response to comments made in Australian Doctor and Medical Observer highlighting missed opportunities for referrals to GPs by pharmacy staff. [Read More…]

93% of Australian university students have an inadequate diet

healthy eating for university students

Ninety three per cent of university students do not eat the recommended serves of fruit and vegetables, according to research conducted in the University of Newcastle. The research targeted this group because they are in a key time to cement healthy eating habits to set them up for a healthy life. Researcher and Accredited Practising [Read More…]

The dangerous, insidious workplace stress you may not even be aware of – by Anthony Moncada

Anthony Moncada

Over the last few years, compelling evidence has been collated indicating there is a silent but devastating epidemic in our workplaces. Studies from around the globe acknowledge alarming statistics regarding the massive impact of financial stress in the workplace. The human impact is scary and it’s a productivity draining liability for business. Some statistics from [Read More…]

Nurses and premature death – what’s the link in aged care?

premature death in aged care

The last 13 years has witnessed an increased frequency of premature death in aged care facilities. Research by Monash University Professor Joseph Ibrahim, revealed that the causes that are potentially preventable are which are falls, choking and suicide. Following are the key points of the research: There were 21 672 deaths of nursing home residents [Read More…]

Unconscious sexism in medicine discussed at RACS scientific congress

sexism harassment and bullying in surgery

The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) Annual Scientific Congress involved discussions around cases unconscious sexism in surgery, many which affect women. According to Dr Katrina Hutchison, a researcher at Macquarie University, unconscious sexism is when the victim and/or perpetrator are unaware that particular behaviours are sexist or derogatory. She says that the behaviours come [Read More…]

New gold standard preventative management for knee osteoarthritis might be overlooked as surgery is “cheaper”?

osteoarthritis of the knee clinical care standard

The Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) endorsed a new Osteoarthritis of the Knee Clinical Care Standard. The standard includes encouraging patients to lose weight and do more exercise, as well as using pain relieving medicines. Referral to an orthopaedic surgeon and knee replacement surgery would only be considered when a patient’s symptoms no longer respond to [Read More…]

Be quick! Student scholarships available for Indigenous Allied Health Australia 2017 national conference

2017 HealthFusion Team Challenge

Limited scholarships are available to encourage and support students to attend the Indigenous Allied Health Australia (IAHA) National Conference. To be eligible to apply for scholarships, students must be full and associate IAHA members. Scholarship recipients will receive up to a maximum of $2,500 for travel, accommodation, and registration assistance based on the eligibility and [Read More…]

Volunteer OTs, psychologists & speechies called on to support refugees and asylum seekers in Victoria

support for refugees

Through the work of the Disability Action Group, AMES Australia have initiated establishment of Refugee Disability Network (RDN) with Occupational Therapy Australia, Speech Pathology Australia and the Australian Psychological Society. The work of RDN is focused on providing immediate, practical solutions to improve health outcomes for newly arrived Refugees by creating shorter pathways to specialist [Read More…]

Extraordinary GPs and pharmacists receive Queen’s Birthday Honours

GPs and pharmacists receive Queen’s birthday honours

Several general practitioners and pharmacists received Queen’s Birthday Honours for their outstanding service to their professions. The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) warmly congratulated all RACGP members honoured in the 2017 Queen’s Birthday Honours List. The highlighted the outstanding dedication and contribution of Dr Tim Mooney and Dr Catherine Regan, who both received [Read More…]

Submissions invited for Senate inquiry of private health insurance

senate inquiry to examine private health insurance

Individuals and organisations are invited to send their submissions to the Senate inquiry on affordability of private health insurance and out of pocket medical costs by 28th July 2017. Issues around private health insurance have been on the radar of a number of industry organisations for some time, with the Australian Dental Association (ADA) having [Read More…]

Reminder to check, correct & comply with professional and legal advertising obligations

regulated health service advertising

Registered health practitioners are reminded to check, correct and comply with their professional and legal advertising obligations. The National Boards and the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) have published a strategy for the National Scheme to help keep health service consumers safe from misleading advertising. AHPRA CEO Mr Fletcher said, “The National Law limits [Read More…]

The ‘Secret’ to making a Fortune – by Anthony Moncada

Anthony Moncada

The experts and commentators rave in awe of its power. They extol its benefits while pointing to a hockey shaped graph depicting exponential growth of your small investment becoming a massive fortune over time. No doubt you have heard all about compound interest, BUT ITS NOT THE SECRET. No doubt you have heard the quote [Read More…]

Really? Can being connected with others and our purpose in life make us live longer?

the role of life purpose in mortality

Having a purpose in life is an indicator of longevity across adulthood, according to a longitudinal study during its 14 year assessment. The study sought to examine whether purpose promotes longevity across the adult years, using data from the longitudinal MIDUS sample. The study began in 1994-1995 and involved 7,108 participants between the ages of [Read More…]

APS welcomes Medicare rebate for rural & remote clients’ online video consultations with psychologists

medicare rebate for psychology videoconferencing consultations

The Australian Psychological Society (APS) has warmly welcomed the Government’s announcement that people living in rural and remote Australia will be able to claim a Medicare rebate for online videoconferencing consultations with psychologists. APS President Anthony Cichell said that this will provide greater equity of access to evidence-based psychological care for Australians living in remote areas. [Read More…]

$54.4 investment to boost clinical training in regional Australia

regional health training hubs

The Federal Coalition Government has allocated $54.4 million over 2016-17 to 2018-19 for new Regional Training Hubs and University Departments of Rural Health (UDRH). Assistant Minister for Health, Dr David Gillespie, announced the locations of 26 regional training hubs and 3 new UDRHs and the universities that will operate them. The University of Notre Dame [Read More…]

Ms Dhu coronial findings show importance of teaching doctors and nurses about unconscious bias


This article was originally published on The Conversation. Gregory Phillips, Baker IDI Heart & Diabetes Institute In delivering her findings of the coronial inquest into the death of 22-year-old Ms Dhu during time spent in a Western Australian jail cell, state coroner Ros Fogliani was highly critical of some actions of police and medical staff. [Read More…]

Digitally based physiotherapy equally beneficial to traditional face to face care

internet based physiotherapy

The Australian Physiotherapy Association has recently been highlighting research around internet delivered physiotherapy services. A study found evidence that internet-delivered treatments are effective in managing chronic knee pain. The 148 people with chronic knee pain participated in this study were allocated into an intervention group or a control group. The intervention group had seven Skype [Read More…]

What is wrong with most ‘financial plans’ for doctors? By Anthony Moncada – independent financial planner

Anthony Moncada

80% of ‘financial planners’ operate under the auspices of an institutional owner. That institution makes most of its money selling managed funds and life insurance. Unsurprisingly, about 80% of financial plans are therefore a waste of time and money. They only deal with managed funds and insurance products. They do not deal with the really [Read More…]

A man fined for unlawfully representing himself as a registered optometrist

unlawful optometrist fined

After being found guilty for holding himself as a registered optometrist for the second time, a man in Western Australia fined in the amount of $18,000 and have to pay a cost of $2,865 to AHPRA. Mr Anthony Patrick Cashman has been convicted for representing himself and claiming to be a registered optometrist, while not [Read More…]

From scepticism to rolling out the welcome mat: 8 professions respond to the federal health budget

2017-18 federal health budget response

The 2017-18 Federal Budget was handed down on 9 May 2017 by the Turnbull Government. The budget received mixed responses from various health associations and organisations. The freeze will be lifted from bulk billing incentives for GP consultations from 1 July 2017, from standard GP consultations and other specialist consultations from 1 July 2018, from [Read More…]

Revised psychology 4+2 pathway guidelines operational today

revised 4+2 psychology internship guidelines

Changes to the Psychology Board of Australia’s 4+2 pathway into effect today. This means that from today: All new applications for approval of a 4+2 internship program must include an internship plan that meets the requirements of the revised guideline. The Board starts to accept applications for general registration from current 4+2 pathway provisional psychologists [Read More…]

From freaking out to freaking awesome – how mindfulness transformed my practice – by Amanda Griffiths

AMG PAH with MHC poster

Freaking out – my deepest, darkest fears as a health practitioner For my entire twelve and eleven twelfths year career as an optometrist I’d struggled with my emotions. I think it had started when I was a new graduate in 2004, and because the repetitive thought pattern stayed on, I was always second-guessing everything I [Read More…]

How to be a Happy Health Practitioner – by optometrist Carina Trinh

Carina Trinh

So, there’s this talk that I feel extremely passionate about that I give to the new graduate optometrists who enter the workforce in NSW/ACT each year as part of Young Optometrists Inc. NSW/ACT that covers the importance of self-care for optometrists. But really, it applies to all health care practitioners.   Being a Health Care [Read More…]

Being mindful in dentistry to help dental phobes – a Q&A with Dr Wilfred Koon

Wilfred Koon

Why did you decide to focus on dental phobia, and how were you introduced to ways to help people overcome this? I have always been someone who cares for other people’s feeling. Whenever I do something I would try to put myself in that person’s shoes and try to imagine how they would feel, and [Read More…]

Just when you thought multitasking was efficient…. Think again…

how multitasking affects the way we think

There was a time when we thought that multitasking was a superpower. We would pride ourselves when we could do two tasks or more at one time, saying it was efficient or that we had a high capacity for concentration. But recent research says that multitasking affects our mind and performance. In his micro-lecture for [Read More…]

Mindfulness for health professionals – by Dr Kathryn Choules (PhD) and Dr Samantha Clarke (PhD)

Kathryn Choules

Due to my own developing interest in mindfulness in my own practice as an optometrist, and for the wider community of health practitioners, I thought it was worth asking mindfulness teachers and psychologists about how health practitioners can be mindful in their practice and interactions with patients. I was fortunate enough to receive responses from [Read More…]