An important issue, as a GP I see many people using excessive OTC Codeine. Drugs of addiction have no place in the armament of treatments for benign condition.s Thank you Edwin Kruys
It is concerning that those who have been given responsibility to look after the health of Australians take decisions influenced bycommercial interests instead of sound evidence and common sense.
As I have said before we have an opiate problem in Australia and it is the responsibility of doctors, pharmacists, consumers and governments to solve it.
One of the opiates that are harmful is codeine. Codeine is closely related to morphine and can cause dependence, addiction, poisoning and, in high doses or in combination with other drugs, death. That’s why in many countries this painkiller, like other opiates, is only available via a doctor’s prescription.
The independent Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has decided to do the same in Australia after extensive consultations with stakeholders including doctors, pharmacy groups and state health departments.
From 1 February 2018, medicines containing codeine will no longer be available without prescription in pharmacies.There will still…
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During my medical training in Amsterdam I witnessed many of the effects of the Dutch liberal policies such as the legalised practice of euthanasia and their model on cannabis. The Netherlands was also the first country in the world to legalise same-sex marriage over 15 years ago.
When it comes to same-sex marriage I support this. Not so much because of health reasons but simply because I believe it is fair.
I acknowledge that LGBTIQ communities (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Questioning) have had a lot to endure. I also respect that there will be people who disagree with me and may have other opinions.
In Australia we now have the odd situation of the voluntary Australian Marriage Law Postal Vote, where we are asked to vote on the question: Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?
The RACGP position
The postal vote has created healthy…
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Australia’s GPs believe that mental health is the number one emerging health concern, often related to co-existing chronic health conditions – but more is needed to keep Australians well.
This is one of the conclusions presented in the benchmark report General Practice: Health of the Nation 2017 which gives a unique overview of the general practice sector.
The report is based on various sources, including research commissioned by the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) and the MABEL (Medicine in Australia: Balancing Employment and Life) Survey.
Some of the key messages from the report:
- Mental health is today’s biggest health problem and will continue to be an issue in the future
- The GP is the most accessible health professional and should be utilised to keep Australia well
- Patient out-of-pocket expenses in general practice are increasing and present a barrier to patients accessing the required care
The bad news
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Researchers draw their own conclusions – what was the agenda, what was the audience
A new national study published in the Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health shows that around ninety percent of parents are mostly or completely confident in GPs to provide general care to their children.
This is of course good news.
The findings also show that 93% of the parents participating in the study reported that they would take their child to see a GP in the event of a minor illness, instead of visiting the emergency department – which is exactly what everyone wants.
Therefore I was surprised to read the conclusion from the authors, a group of mainly academic paediatric researchers, that “confidence with GPs is an issue for parents of many walks of life” which could potentially lead to “greater numbers of ED presentations for children with lower urgency conditions.”
Sorry? The results of the study clearly show that only 2% of parents were not very confident in…
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The problem with headlines about medical breakthroughs and miracle cures is that they never live up to the expectations. On the other hand, the breakthroughs happening every day in primary care do not attract much media attention.
Seventeen years ago medical journalist professor Schwitzer published the seven words you shouldn’t use in medical news: ‘promise’, ‘breakthrough’, ‘dramatic’, ‘miracle’, ‘cure’, ‘hope’ and ‘victim’. Has Schwitzer’s taboo list made an impact?
Not really. A quick Google search shows that the same words are still used to celebrate ‘heroic medicine’ – often surgical interventions, new drugs or medical technologies. Scientific progress and developments are important but not always easily translated to every day care for every day Australians. They are never ‘miracle cures’.
At the same time we see an ongoing increase in spending on hospital treatments and little investment in keeping Australians healthy and out of hospital. The breakthroughs in primary care…
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Kudos to Manabu Saito for the many firsts in his Rural Generalist Workshop supported by the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine. In a move that is new to Japan Dr Saito ran a workshop for six Vanguard Rural Generalists of the Japanese Rural Generalist Program, with Specialists in Anaesthetics, Obstetrics, Surgery, Cardiology, Orthopaedics and Radiology, running sessions on clinical skill building and exposure to cross discipline knowledge.
Medical knowledge was coupled with feedback and performance improvement, another first for the Registrars as their supervisors gave them personal feedback not only in medical knowledge but also their evolving use of the English language with the very excellent Jasmine Millman.
Jasmine is a Dietician, English teacher and Ph.D. Student living on Okinawa researching gut microbial biomes as a possible key to the longevity of Japanese people’s lives. It was a pleasure to meet another Australian passionately supporting the…
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