For the sake of North Coast residents, many of whom are on low incomes, the current ‘freeze’ on the rebate for Medicare consultation items should be brought to an end by whichever parties win government this weekend.

The Northern Rivers General Practice Network (NRGPN) has entered the campaign fray because of its ongoing concern about patients who rely on GPs as their first port of call when facing concerns about their health.

Following the successful workshop held in Byron Bay early this year, the NRGPN, UCRH and NNSW LHD are holding another workshop on prescribing opioids

Pain management is a focus for the NCPHN this year and practices interested in developing their skills and processes for managing chronic pain will greatly benefit. 

The event will be held at the Ramada Hotel Ballina on Sunday 24 July from 9.30 am to 4 pm. 

Scanning electron micrograph of a human neutrophil ingesting multi-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)

A new report  billed as a ‘landmark’ in Australian research has warned that the current over-use of antibiotics could send the nation, and by extension the wider world, back to the days before modern medicine - the Dark Ages.

The Antimicrobial Use and Resistance in Australia (AURA) 2016 report was produced by the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care. This Australian Government agency leads and coordinates national improvements in the safety and quality of health care based on the best available evidence.

Changes in the people’s transport highlights how age-old China has modernised in just a few decades, as GP Speak’s Angela Bettess found on a recent visit.

My husband Paul travelled to China in the 80s and still recalls how much change has occurred in this time. At that time an escorted tour was an prerequisite to travelling there and, disembarking from the plane in Beijing airport, his first glimpse of engineering was the construction of runways with the aid of trucks, wheelbarrows and rocks.

People were dressed in clothing reflecting the Mao Tse-Tung era and there was a strong military presence. Most vehicles were black military cars; bicycles were the main form of the ordinary people’s transport, apart from rundown public buses.

How massively different nowadays! On our visit we saw amazing freeways and fast bullet trains that travel at speeds of up to 400 kph. There were very few bicycles or rickshaws (for goods, not people) on the streets, these having been replaced by motorbikes, often with electric motors.

Newly elected AMA President, Dr Michael Gannon

The newly elected federal president of the AMA, obstetrician and gynaecologist Dr Michael Gannon, from WA, takes up the reins at a time when, in his words, the Australian health system is at “a crossroads.”

This makes the AMA’s relationship with federal politics more important than it has ever been, he added: “The AMA needs strong leadership with an appetite to engage constructively with Government, whichever political party is in power.”