AMA (WA) Blog | AMA (WA)

AMA (WA) Blog

The Australian Medical Association (WA) Blog showcases a range of commentary, opinion pieces, profiles and insightful features – all designed to educate, inform and yes, in some cases, even entertain.

The AMA (WA) Blog can be accessed by members, all other healthcare professionals and the general public.

Blog 5 Aug 2022
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Meet the Councillor: Q&A with Dr Parthasarathy Ramesh

Why did you join the AMA (WA) Council? Senior doctors and doctors in training have been going through a turbulent…

Blog 29 Jul 2022
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CEO Message: MEDCON22 inspires, informs and educates

A big thank you to those who attended MEDCON22 at Crown, whether in its entirety or just the Friday or…

Blog 29 Jul 2022
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President’s Blog: No speculation needed on leadership

If the highest aim of a captain were to preserve his ship, he would keep it in port forever. Much…

Blog 28 Jul 2022
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Emily Leung features as soloist in WA Doctors’ Orchestra

Formed in 2006, the WA Doctors’ Orchestra (WADO) is comprised of doctors and medical students who are also classically trained…

Blog 18 Jul 2022
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Scheduled Election – ASMOF Federal Executive Member from the WA Branch

The Registered Organisations Commission (ROC) has made arrangements with the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) under Section 189 of the Fair…

Blog 15 Jul 2022
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President’s Blog: Adjust your vision

This week we got our first glimpse of the work of the not very impressively named James Webb Space Telescope.…

Blog 8 Jul 2022
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Cracking the genetic code of Parkinson’s disease

My team of researchers at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, with funding from the Shake It Up Australia Foundation…

Blog 4 Jul 2022
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Scheduled ASMOF Branch Council Election, Western Australia

The Registered Organisations Commission (ROC) has made arrangements with the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) under Section 189 of the Fair…

Blog 4 Jul 2022
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President’s Blog: New deal for doctors

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, goes a Chinese proverb.  In the case of the…

Blog 28 Jun 2022
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CPD changes raise financial wellbeing concerns for DiTs

The Medical Board (AHPRA) together with the Australian Medical Council (AMC) are revising the standards for continuing professional development (CPD),…

Blog 20 Jun 2022
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The evidence on e-cigarettes is clear

A recently published systematic review of the evidence related to e-cigarettes undertaken by the Australian National University is the most…

Blog 20 Jun 2022
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Public health pulse: It’s time to protect kids from junk food advertising

The AMA (WA) has joined leading health and medical organisations in the State to call on the WA Government to…

Blog 20 Jun 2022
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Australian pharmacy first a failure for healthcare

It was both surprising and disappointing to learn the McGowan Government has planned to expand the community pharmacy vaccination program.…

Blog 17 Jun 2022
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Working towards an outcome

At Monday night’s AGM, I was re-elected, for a second year, as AMA (WA) President, along with Vice Presidents Dr…

Blog 13 Jun 2022
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Best seat in the house!

Dr Franc Henze on the freedom, the views and the feeling when flying his trusty Cirrus amidst the clouds. Janine…

Blog 3 Jun 2022
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AMA (WA) muscle helps secure fair flu vax deal

In the latest example of AMA (WA) advocacy achieving significant results for members, a deal has been struck for compensation…

Blog 3 Jun 2022
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President’s Blog: Storm Warning

When you’ve been sounding the alarm and telling people to batten down the hatches, it’s based on the best advice…

Blog 30 May 2022
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The Last Word: Support the AMA’s public hospital advocacy

Our public hospitals are in crisis. You may have heard me repeat this more than a few times lately. While…

Blog 30 May 2022
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Master and apprentice

Traipsing the hospital corridors as a glassy-eyed medical student with a decorative stethoscope may evoke recent or distant memories, but…

Blog 30 May 2022
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Embracing your new ‘home’ as an IMG

After graduating from Lady Hardinge Medical College and completing my internship in New Delhi, India, I relocated to Australia in…

Blog 30 May 2022
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First things first…governance reform please!

The AMA (WA) welcomes the close attention and thorough review of the concerns regarding child and adolescent mental health services…

Blog 30 May 2022
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Implementation key to promising report

The WA Branch of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) has been eagerly awaiting the release…

Blog 30 May 2022
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Working to support GPs through COVID in WA

I think most of us have struggled to varying degrees to keep our practices going and care for our patients…

Blog 23 May 2022
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President’s Blog: Feeling the burn

Talk about the zeitgeist. Our Medicus cover story this month is all about climate change, particularly as it applies to…

Blog 18 May 2022
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First things first… governance reform please!

The AMA (WA) welcomes the close attention and thorough review of the concerns regarding child and adolescent mental health services,…

Blog 6 May 2022
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President’s Blog: The man in the iron ore mask

Life has had its share of ups and downs for Premier Mark McGowan in recent times. He has had COVID-19…

Blog 22 Apr 2022
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Jab expansion a punch in the guts

It was both surprising and disappointing to find out the State Government was planning to expand the community pharmacy vaccination…

Blog 9 Apr 2022
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Having an episode (of Yes Minister)

So, did Premier Mark McGowan follow the best medical advice last week in reducing restrictions?  If you are a logical…

Blog 25 Mar 2022
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President’s Blog: Plenty to crow about on Manic Monday

Far be it for me to ‘Crow’ too much (a one-point nailbiter to the Dockers over Adelaide can do that…

Blog 23 Mar 2022
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How doctors can help fight domestic violence

International Women’s Day is a good time to reflect on what has been done to advance and empower women, and…

Blog 14 Mar 2022
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Voluntary assisted dying

Voluntary Assisted Dying in WA: the people’s choice Dr Scott Blackwell Chair, VAD Board WA Leading up to the passage…

Blog 12 Mar 2022
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President’s Blog: Compassion always a welcome visitor

We’re more than a week into the full border reopening, and really, all things considered (and not to deliberately make…

Blog 4 Mar 2022
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Dealing with employees’ requests for leave during the pandemic

The foreshadowed opening of WA’s borders is likely to result in a significant increase in demand by employees for leave…

Blog 3 Mar 2022
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Anxiety and uncertainty in General Practice: practical tips for the pandemic

If I were to summarise 2022 in a word, it would be “change”. By the time you read this, everything…

Blog 28 Feb 2022
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Leave concerns continue

Despite COVID pressures, health services must do their very best to facilitate access to annual leave. Limited access to annual…

Blog 28 Feb 2022
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The importance of leave in 2022

As a doctor in training (DiT), leave has become an increasingly scarce resource in a healthcare system at breaking point.…

Blog 25 Feb 2022
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President’s Blog: Don’t mention the war (unless you’re talking about the war)

It’s easy to think of COVID-19 as some sort of military adversary, and that’s before you take into account our…

Blog 23 Feb 2022
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Pulse Check

Less than a year ago, Amber-Jade Sanderson was elevated to the role of WA Minister for Environment, Climate Action and…

Blog 12 Feb 2022
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President’s Blog: A week’s a long time in (COVID) politics

With the COVID-19 Omicron variant’s rapid community progress, it’s a challenge to keep up with the endless changes to government…

Blog 2 Feb 2022
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Surgeon’s first novel from the art

When you’re a leading colorectal surgeon with three non-fiction books about the workings of the bowels, there’s probably the temptation…

Blog 30 Jan 2022
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President’s Blog: No open and shut case

Western Australia is heading back to school tomorrow, so good luck to all parents negotiating one of the most stressful…

Blog 28 Jan 2022
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Flashback Friday: The dark art of public health advocacy

I was fortunate to attend the recent Australian Public Health Conference in Cairns, which brought together public health professionals from…

Blog 19 Jan 2022
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Embracing gender diversity

It was heartening to see a number of events celebrating diversity and the LGBTI community held across the State recently…

Blog 14 Jan 2022
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Flashback friday: Physician, heal thyself

Dr Omar Khorshid, AMA Federal President, Orthopaedic Surgeon, Head of Department, Fremantle Hospital, Managing Partner, Coastal Orthopaedic Group. Most of…

Blog 14 Jan 2022
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President’s Blog: Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it a plan?

If a tree falls in a forest and nobody hears it, did it really make a sound? I can assure…

Blog 13 Jan 2022
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Managing difficult patient experiences

Managing expectations and learning new skills on the fly is essential to the transition from medical school to the workplace…

Blog 10 Jan 2022
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Fight or flight?

With no formal state workforce plan and experienced psychiatrists exiting the public system, Psychiatry in WA is in crisis, writes…

Blog 10 Jan 2022
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Vital life skills underpin year of learning

On my first day as an intern, I stood at the top of the stairs in the middle of the…

Blog 6 Jan 2022
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Training and workforce issues dominate DiT agenda

It is an honour to take on the role of AMA (WA) Doctors in Training (DiT) Co-Chair to represent and…

Blog 6 Jan 2022
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Meet the Councillor-Double vision of medicine and surgery a bonus

Q. Why did you join the AMA (WA) Council? TC: I think that the best healthcare systems protect the direct,…

Blog 24 Dec 2021
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Oh yes!

It has been an action-packed 2021 for the program with more volunteers and schools signing up than previous years.  After…

Blog 24 Dec 2021
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Fighting the good fight for GPs

With a little more than a month to go before the close of 2021, it is customary to look back…

Blog 24 Dec 2021
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Finding the fix

An Emergency Care Summit saw key stakeholders collaborating on workable solutions to offer immediate relief from ED overcrowding in public…

Blog 24 Dec 2021
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AMA policy sets agenda

As Western Australia grappled with the ongoing impact of the pandemic, the AMA (WA) has continued to strongly advocate for…

Blog 24 Dec 2021
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How the AMA (WA) went into battle against bureaucracy – and won

After years of negotiation and the matter being taken to the WA Industrial Relations Commission (WAIRC), two female doctors at…

Blog 17 Dec 2021
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President’s Blog: In their hands

Just lately, I’ve seen the future. No, I haven’t opened up a portal to another dimension in some forgotten section of Charlie’s,…

Blog 17 Dec 2021
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Flashback Friday: 365 days of health (December 2017)

Once again, the AMA (WA) has been unrelenting in its representation of doctors, patients and the wider community in the…

Blog 15 Dec 2021
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AMA (WA) response to the Government’s border transition timeline and conditions

At a media conference at the AMA (WA) office on Monday, 13 December 2021, AMA (WA) President Dr Mark Duncan-Smith…

Blog 7 Dec 2021
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Building skill power

A key component of being a medical student is one’s ability to access, perceive, understand, retain and recall information. Owing…

Blog 3 Dec 2021
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SOMETHING OLD, SOMETHING NEW, SOMETHING BORROWED, SOMETHING BLUE: Ideas for Aboriginal primary health system development

In a series of annual report cards, the AMA has made significant contributions to strategic directions for Aboriginal health. To…

Blog 3 Dec 2021
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President’s Blog: Brighter future no longer a remote possibility

The pro-disease lobby hasn’t exactly hit a wall but you wouldn’t say they were in pole position right now.  This week a woman crashed into…

Blog 24 Nov 2021
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No looking away here

Invisible Boys and What Young People Want from Mental Health Services both offer confronting insights into youth mental health. Considering…

Blog 22 Nov 2021
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Emergence Plan Transcript, AMA (WA) November 21

Mark Duncan-Smith AMA (WA) has created an emergence plan on the back of feedback that we’ve had from people in…

Blog 19 Nov 2021
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President’s Blog: Exercise your rights but keep your distance

When you’re a surgeon whose skills can determine the health outcomes of an anaesthetised patient who has given themselves completely…

Blog 19 Nov 2021
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Flashback Friday: How Healthy is Rural Health? – November 2012

The key issue of rural health has been in the news of late and not in a positive manner. Doctors…

Blog 16 Nov 2021
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General Practice has an important place in the managment of eating disorders

Dr Susie Cann is a general practitioner at GPs on Bayview in Claremont. Her special interest is in child and…

Blog 11 Nov 2021
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Appetite for change

The recent commitment to fund additional eating disorder services in WA’s public health system is welcome, but is it enough…

Blog 5 Nov 2021
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President’s Blog: Stand for your members, or you stand for nothing

The last two weeks have been proud ones for the AMA (WA). They have epitomised what this organisation exists to achieve.  Our workplace relations team was in the WA…

Blog 5 Nov 2021
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Flashback Friday: Bedevilled- October 2015

It’s a three-letter word that is possibly the most commonly used in modern medicine. The word is ‘bed’ and it…

Blog 26 Oct 2021
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Switching on

WA Health decision-makers and doctors came together to discuss how our health system can embrace climate sustainability at all levels.…

Blog 22 Oct 2021
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Flashback Friday: No smoke without ire – October 2012

For years the Australian Medical Association (WA) has played a leading role in making smoking history. The AMA (WA) has…

Blog 22 Oct 2021
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A question of answers – Mandatory Vaccination webinar

Close to 100 doctors and practice administration staff logged on to the inaugural session of the AMA (WA)’s Practice Management…

Blog 22 Oct 2021
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President’s Blog: Knock, knock – no joke here!

It took yet another COVID-19 scare – this time courtesy an interstate truck driver – for the McGowan Government to…

Blog 14 Oct 2021
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No-fault vaccination compensation – an AMA win for GPs and for Australia

General practitioners have undoubtedly done the heavy lifting to get COVID-19 vaccination rolled out across Australia, not just in the…

Blog 13 Oct 2021
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Sick leave – ways COVID has changed our lives #918

Stay home when sick. Seems like such a no-brainer. Especially when we deal with patients who are already compromised and…

Blog 11 Oct 2021
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No better time to revisit this mental health message

It’s no secret or surprise that COVID-19 and related restrictions imposed to protect our public health has reportedly had a…

Blog 8 Oct 2021
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Equal Opportunity Act review

The AMA (WA) regularly makes submissions to Government relating to legislative change. Sometimes the submission is prompted by a particular…

Blog 8 Oct 2021
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Flashback Friday: Screaming for help – March 2013

I had an extraordinary experience in January. Mental health hit the headlines and I had a little time on my…

Blog 8 Oct 2021
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President’s Blog: Flight or fight (or fright)

Recently I’ve fielded a lot of questions from the media about WA opening up to the rest of the country and…

Blog 1 Oct 2021
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At Breaking Point

Much has changed since the Australian Medical Association (WA) last conducted its biennial senior public hospital doctor morale and engagement…

Blog 30 Sep 2021
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Flashback Friday: From the Ammunition Vault

It has been 25 years since that fateful day when Australian woke to the news of a shooting rampage at…

Blog 29 Sep 2021
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Capitalising on the COVID response

Never has Australia been more focused on solid strategies to control and eliminate infectious diseases. But while attention has been…

Blog 28 Sep 2021
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President’s Blog: Still time for the Premier to make health a winner

Given the long weekend we’ve just had, it may have seemed a bit churlish to invite the media along to the AMA (WA) offices…

Blog 28 Sep 2021
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Flashback Friday: Code Crisis – April 2014

I first used the term ‘demand tsunami’ for a five-minute presentation to a health innovation meeting in Sydney in 2002.…

Blog 22 Sep 2021
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What if there was no AMA?

In the last week of July, I attended the AMA National Conference; unfortunately via a rather stultified Zoom experience. I…

Blog 15 Sep 2021
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Good luck for a good night

The push toward 24-hour medicine and the constant demands of the Four-Hour Rule have led to a significant increase in…

Blog 12 Sep 2021
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Prisoner Healthcare: Women’s healthcare in prisons a particular challenge

Treating patients in custodial settings presents a unique set of challenges for primary care providers. Not only do prisoners frequently…

Blog 10 Sep 2021
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Flaskback Friday: Holding the Government to Account – June 2012

No state budget can ever earn itself the title perfect except from the most optimistic treasurer. The 2012–13 Western Australian…

Blog 10 Sep 2021
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Health sector heavyweights come together to discuss climate sustainability strategies

In June, AMA (WA)’s MEDCON21 session on ‘Climate change, health and sustainability in WA – linking science to action’, saw…

Blog 10 Sep 2021
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Surprise, surprise, no surprises in Budget going backwards

Yesterday Premier Mark McGowan, who doubles as WA Treasurer these days, delivered the State Budget.  You may recall that about a…

Blog 10 Sep 2021
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Intern Diary: The fundamental privileges of “doctoring”

As we near the end of our third intern term, I reflect on all that has changed over the last…

Blog 8 Sep 2021
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Progress welcomed, persistence needed: Tobacco control has prevented four lung cancer deaths a week since 1982 in WA

Over the last four decades, Australia has implemented numerous tobacco control initiatives, including tobacco excises, bans on tobacco advertising, smoke-free…

Blog 6 Sep 2021
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Neurofibromatosis: associated tumours of childhood in the molecular era

Neurofibromatosis (NF) is a multi-systemic genetic disorder characterised by benign indolent neurofibromas in subcutaneous and deep locations but is also associated…

Blog 30 Aug 2021
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What if there was no AMA?

In the last week of July, I attended the AMA National Conference; unfortunately via a rather stultified Zoom experience. I…

Blog 27 Aug 2021
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Flashback Friday: Hands off Immunisation, Mr Prime Minister! – August 2014

Don’t we live in the ‘lucky country’! I have never seen a patient with epiglottitis. Neither have I had one…

Blog 25 Aug 2021
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State Budget 2021: a fighting chance for health?

Last year the AMA (WA) took a major swipe at the 2020/21 State Budget, calling it a “lost opportunity” due…

Blog 22 Aug 2021
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Prisoner Healthcare: Who are we to judge?

The United Nations has stated that health is a fundamental human right and every human being is entitled to the…

Blog 19 Aug 2021
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Refocus, reset, resolve: The ED mental health crisis is not an “epidemic”

Mental health presentations in Western Australian emergency departments have increased significantly over the last decade. According to current AIHW data…

Blog 17 Aug 2021
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Building a GP wish list

An election is coming up early next year. Health will be a hot topic, even more so than usual. The Australian…

Blog 16 Aug 2021
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Why I am calling for a WA Health governance review

Earlier this year Health Minister Roger Cook said he was not responsible for the culture in an emergency department where…

Blog 13 Aug 2021
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FLASHBACK FRIDAY: Hospital Staffing Crisis – August 2001

The use of overseas trained temporary visa doctors (TVDs) to meet Unmet Areas of Need now accounts for almost 30%…

Blog 13 Aug 2021
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President’s Blog: If it won’t budge, time to budget

There’s a lot of theatre about a State Budget, and I’m not talking medical theatres. We always knew there’d be…

Blog 3 Aug 2021
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AMA (WA) President Dr Mark Duncan-Smith chats with Ben O’Shea on The West Live – 2 August 2021

Yesterday morning, AMA (WA) President Dr Mark Duncan-Smith was a guest of West Live with Ben O’Shea. In a wide-ranging…

Blog 30 Jul 2021
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FLASHBACK FRIDAY: General Practice Issues: How you can put a stop to bulk billing – July 1996

Bulk billing is leading to the demise of general practice because it is allowing the Government to set the fees.…

Blog 29 Jul 2021
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President’s Blog: Which part of ‘this should never happen again’ do we need to reiterate here?

It’s a matter of weeks since I was elected President of the AMA (WA). Who would have thought we’d be…

Blog 26 Jul 2021
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Permanent Contracts: why WA Health must commit to its medical workforce

Despite the many health issues we currently face, it didn’t take long to determine the focus of my inaugural president’s…

Blog 21 Jul 2021
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Medicus Cover Story: The Right Place, The Right Time – July 2021

He may have ascended to the top position in WA’s peak medical body but as a young man, our new…

Blog 20 Jul 2021
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Intern Diary: Know your strengths and limitations

I remember, as a final-year medical student, several lecturers saying something along the lines of “there isn’t much difference between…

Blog 19 Jul 2021
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Scheduled ASMOF Branch Council Election, Western Australia & Northern Territory

The Registered Organisations Commission (ROC) has made arrangements with the Australian Electoral Commission (‘AEC’) under Section 189 of the Fair…

Blog 16 Jul 2021
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FWC and WAIRC update a number of health care awards

The Fair Work Commission and the Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission handed down their 2021 Minimum Wage Decisions on 16…

Blog 12 Jul 2021
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Sleep problems? Time to wake up

Discussing sleep issues is easy, particularly with hard-working people like medical practitioners. We all know how poor sleep affects our…

Blog 9 Jul 2021
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NAIDOC Week 2021 – Celebrating Indigenous Medical Practitioners – Part II

Meet Dr Corey Dalton, GP Registrar, Joondalup Health Campus Where were you born / where did you grow up? Did…

Blog 8 Jul 2021
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NAIDOC Week 2021 – Celebrating Indigenous Medical Practitioners – Part I

Meet Dr Lorraine Anderson, Medical Director, Kimberley Aboriginal Medical Services Ltd Where were you born / where did you grow…

Blog 2 Jul 2021
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A Message from the President: Two weeks in and hardly a breath taken.

Two weeks ago this evening, I was very proud to be confirmed as the new President of the AMA (WA)…

Blog 1 Jul 2021
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Ambulance ramping hits all-time record

In June 2021, the trend for ambulance ramping (the time patients spent waiting in ambulances to access emergency departments, beyond…

Blog 1 Jul 2021
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Milestone Voluntary Assisting Dying option commences

From today, 1 July 2021, an eligible adult will now be able to access voluntary assisted dying (VAD) as part…

Blog 1 Jul 2021
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2021 AMA (WA) Gala Ball: a night of elegance, celebration & recognition of our finest

The AMA (WA)’s inaugural Gala Ball was one of the highlights of MEDCON21 with 600 doctors and corporate guests gathering…

Blog 1 Jun 2021
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VAD update: advice and action

The role of the Implementation Leadership Team (ILT) on Voluntary Assisted Dying (VAD) has been clear from the outset. The…

Blog 31 May 2021
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Australian Salaried Medical Officers Federation (ASMOF) WA Branch Financial Report

The ASMOF WA Branch Financial Report is now available. The Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Act 2009 (RO Act) imposes financial accountability obligations…

Blog 21 May 2021
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A day in the life of a hospital emergency department

Here’s the interview with AMA (WA) President, Dr Andrew Miller, on The Project with Waleed Aly and Lisa Wilkinson, Thursday, 20…

Blog 7 May 2021
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What a difference a mask can make

Here’s a transcript of a media conference with AMA (WA) President, Dr Andrew Miller, on Monday 3 May 2021. The…

Blog 23 Apr 2021
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AMA fight for GPs underpaid by WA Health reaches Court

A consultant/specialist is defined as anyone who holds the qualification of a university or college, recognised by the Australian Medical…

Blog 23 Apr 2021
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Code crisis – morale at Bunbury Regional Hospital

A ruptured relationship between doctors and WACHS Senior Executive has triggered a pressure cooker situation at Bunbury Regional Hospital. “WACHS…

Blog 16 Apr 2021
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2020 ASMOF Financial Report

The Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Act 2009 (RO Act) imposes financial accountability obligations on Federal Registered Unions. The obligations include…

Blog 9 Apr 2021
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Hospital Health Check 2021 – time for doctors in training to have their say

Hospital Health Check is more than a survey. It’s a chance for doctors in training (DiTs) to have their say…

Blog 25 Mar 2021
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Enterprise bargaining agreement needs more agreement

The AMA (WA) is pleased to be making progress with the enterprise bargaining agreement (EBA) negotiations for WA doctors. WA…

Blog 19 Mar 2021
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Scheduled ASMOF Branch Council Election, Western Australia

The Registered Organisations Commission (ROC) has made arrangements with the Australian Electoral Commission (‘AEC’) under Section 189 of the Fair…

Blog 19 Mar 2021
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Beg, borrow, copy, steal

The pandemic has been a festival of delight for the connoisseur of dysfunction. The quality of our reasoning, the fitness…

Blog 19 Mar 2021
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Everyone’s talking about the jab – a breakfast chat

Here’s a transcript of AMA (WA) President, Dr Andrew Miller on ABC Radio Perth, Breakfast with Russell Woolf, Wednesday, 17…

Blog 18 Mar 2021
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Warning sirens against urgent care centres grow louder

We all know that our emergency departments are crowded. Ambulance ramping is at unprecedented levels. A significant minority of patients…

Blog 18 Mar 2021
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“Teaching makes you constantly evaluate your own practice”

Q&A with Dr Brigid Corrigan, consultant plastic surgeon 1. Why did you join the Council of the AMA (WA)? BC:…

Blog 16 Mar 2021
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2021 – what is the AMA going to do for you?

There will be many issues competing for attention this year. My choice of title is deliberate, as now more than…

Blog 15 Mar 2021
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New year, new normal?

As 2020 drew to a close, I think we were all hoping that the year ahead would mark a return…

Blog 11 Mar 2021
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The longest night: my experience of ambulance ramping

This is a first-hand account of a woman’s hospital nightmare in a letter written to the Health Minister and St…

Blog 11 Mar 2021
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Ramping-gate – part 2

ED docs in survival mode in “war zone” In recent months, the hours that patients have spent waiting within ambulances,…

Blog 10 Mar 2021
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Ramping-gate – part 1

4,111 hours – the unforgettable scandal blocking access to emergency care The past year will forever be remembered for its…

Blog 8 Mar 2021
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Whose back, Mr Treasurer?

This article looks at how the government has largely overlooked measures that support women in the workplace. The impacts of…

Blog 5 Mar 2021
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Paperwork or patient connection?

Starting my intern year with a mixed General Practice and medical ward rotation in Albany has been an exciting and…

Blog 3 Mar 2021
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Lockdown town

We all dodged a bullet when the recent case of SARS-Cov-2 escaped from oxymoronic ‘hotel quarantine’ in Perth. Thankfully it…

Blog 11 Feb 2021
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Filling the unmet need for youth mental health services

We often hear the next generation, who speak openly about their feelings, described as soft or weak. They aren’t. This…

Blog 9 Feb 2021
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Intern Diary Learning Curve

Dr Mudra Shah writes a letter to her younger self and shares some important lessons Dear Me, I am writing…

Blog 15 Jan 2021
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National Cervical Screening Program Update

In December 2017, the ‘renewed’ Australian National Cervical Screening Program (NCSP) commenced, with the following main features: Five-yearly primary HPV…

Blog 14 Jan 2021
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A year like no other: the impact of COVID-19 on medical student stress in WA

2020 has been a year to remember for all the wrong reasons. The impact of COVID-19 has disrupted our lives…

Blog 12 Jan 2021
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General Practice in 2020 a year like no other

At this time of year, we often reflect on the 12 months that have just passed – the issues, the…

Blog 7 Jan 2021
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Sense of duty drives commitment on the job – and off it

Q: Why did you join the AMA (WA) Council? AS: During the COVID crisis, I had worked closely with the AMA…

Blog 5 Jan 2021
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Frank and fearless advocacy never more important

At the start of 2021, with vaccines on the horizon, Australia has demonstrated its ability to control SARS-CoV-2 via border…

Blog 24 Dec 2020
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Operation Optimism

As we come to the end of 2020, we reflect on what can only be described as a tumultuous year…

Blog 24 Dec 2020
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A very surgical Christmas

It was quiet in the theatre, for the Christmas break had come No more elective cases, only pus and blood…

Blog 21 Dec 2020
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Ambulance ramping at records high

Inaction by the McGowan Government is causing complete chaos for patients in WA’s emergency departments. September 2020 marked a dark…

Blog 12 Dec 2020
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The public health legacy of COVID-19

Governments should use the COVID-19 crisis as a blank canvas to address some serious public health issues, writes Miika Coppard.…

Blog 1 Dec 2020
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How WA can keep its doctors

You know this means you’ll lose your long service leave.” These were the words from our Director of Medical Services…

Blog 1 Dec 2020
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Old tale of “90% boredom and 10% terror” incorrect

Meet the AMA (WA) Councillor: Dr Celine Baber tells us why she chose Anaesthesia as her specialty and about her…

Blog 16 Nov 2020
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Hospitals need to get the basics right

This year, the Hospital Health Check (HHC) has revealed an area that all health services can significantly improve on –…

Blog 16 Nov 2020
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Morale and culture take a hit but PCH and RPH stand tall

The annual AMA (WA) Hospital Health Check continues to place a significant emphasis on the twin issues of morale and…

Blog 16 Nov 2020
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Access to leave remains an open wound

Annual leave. It conjures up visions of landmark buildings and monuments, sunbathing on beautiful beaches, chasing waterfalls, hiking up rugged…

Blog 9 Nov 2020
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Hon. Bill Johnston weighs in on the AMA (WA)’s negotiations with WA Health

In July 2020, as part of our EBA advocacy, the Australian Medical Association (WA) wrote to Hon. Bill Johnston, Minister…

Blog 5 Nov 2020
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GET UP TO $5K CASHBACK^ – T&C’s apply

AMA members are eligible to receive up to $2,000^ cashback on top of the cashback offer from the bank or…

Blog 4 Nov 2020
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Burnt out with no end in sight

Every year, the AMA (WA) Hospital Health Check publishes important data about junior doctor burnout, wellbeing, teaching and training, and…

Blog 3 Nov 2020
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The five key claims WA Health does not think you deserve

Since March 2019, the Australian Medical Association (WA) and WA Health, represented by System-Wide Industrial Relations Service (SWIRS), have been…

Blog 30 Oct 2020
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The true cost of testing the market

In January 2015, Steve Fenner, founding Head of Psychiatry at Fiona Stanley Hospital (FSH) called, struggling to find a lead…

Blog 30 Oct 2020
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From ground zero

There is no part of 2020 not marked forever by the emergence of COVID-19, the devastating impacts of which we…

Blog 30 Oct 2020
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Beyond the call of duty

Being on call is synonymous with doctoring. When I tell non-medical friends why I can’t make it to an event,…

Blog 30 Oct 2020
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Because we’re worth it

Why is it important for GP specialists to have parity with other specialists in pay and conditions in the public…

Blog 26 Oct 2020
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AMA (WA) Patient Assisted Travel Scheme Survey

The AMA (WA) is asking rural and remote doctors to provide feedback on the operation of the Patient Assisted Travel…

Blog 19 Oct 2020
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Intern Diary: Job-share more than fair for intern

Get an insight into how you can make job-sharing for internships work, with all the demands that come with juggling…

Blog 19 Oct 2020
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Test of Intentions

WA has the nation’s highest rate of unintentional drug-induced deaths but where is the will to turn around this unwanted…

Blog 19 Oct 2020
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Tobacco is a sunset industry – Time to hasten its decline

Ending the commercial sale of cigarettes will not occur overnight but we need to start the conversation, writes Maurice Swanson.

Blog 16 Oct 2020
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Survey: WA Doctors invited to take part in our latest survey.

WA doctors invited to help shape WA’s approach to Advance Care Planning education, training and awareness raising. WA Health is…

Blog 16 Oct 2020
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Medical Parenting

During a recent consultation with a mother regarding her young child with an upper respiratory tract infection (URTI), I said…

Blog 15 Oct 2020
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Post Training Fellowships

The Australian Medical Association (WA) has recently shone the spotlight on questionable industrial practices involving the local employment of fellows.…

Blog 12 Oct 2020
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Smoking cessation guidelines for patients with a cancer diagnosis

Smoking causes about 21,000 deaths per year in Australia, with about 8,000 of those due to cancer. Whilst most people…

Blog 30 Sep 2020
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The value of entrenched kindness

During times of uncertainty, and in particular over recent months, it is a question that I have often pondered. For…

Blog 29 Sep 2020
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The long, hard-fought journey with non-fatal strangulation

“He pulled me back by my hair and pushed me to the ground. He put his hands around my neck.…

Blog 29 Sep 2020
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The little-known service achieving big things

Trigger warning: The following articles contain references to sexual assault, which some readers may find distressing. A 2019 report by…

Blog 29 Sep 2020
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Whose voice in health?

This year marked the second iteration of the Honourable Roger Cook’s Your Voice in Health engagement survey, which gives WA…

Blog 4 Sep 2020
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Mamma Mia, here we go again!

You must think I’m a terrible mum,” says Megan. She sits down in front of me, having just wrestled two…

Blog 4 Sep 2020
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Intern Diary: Work, network, teamwork

Well here we are in 2020 and what a tumultuous year it’s been in healthcare. As a new intern, a…

Blog 26 Aug 2020
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Burnt out and nowhere to go?

Have you experienced burnout? I have, and what was most shocking from my experience was how quickly it overwhelmed me,…

Blog 18 Aug 2020
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Flashback Friday: Because we’re worth it!

Why is it important for GP specialists to have parity with other specialists in pay and conditions in the public…

Blog 10 Aug 2020
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Extraordinary expectations

I’ve always known that to have a career in medicine, you had to be extraordinary. We are reminded of this…

Blog 6 Aug 2020
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Training the next generation should be back on the agenda

Many areas of our society, and our profession in particular, have been dramatically affected by COVID-19. One area of our…

Blog 6 Aug 2020
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Alcohol harm delivered direct to your door

Alcohol brands and retailers have done their best to keep their usual customers drinking during the anything-but-usual past few months.…

Blog 4 Aug 2020
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Meaning from mental illness – my story

In 2017, I was admitted to the mental health unit at the hospital where I work. For two months after…

Blog 4 Aug 2020
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A new way forward for private mental health in WA

Continuity of patient care is an issue that plagues public and private mental health systems, both in Western Australia and…

Blog 3 Aug 2020
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Navigating the COVID-19 crisis

The COVID-19 pandemic is simultaneously one of the biggest challenges and opportunities in HBF’s 80-year history. As a not-for-profit fund…

Blog 3 Aug 2020
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Time to bring up the ‘L’ word

Every year around this time, shortages of junior medical staff become apparent. Leave relief pools have disappeared, there are desperate…

Blog 31 Jul 2020
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Asbestos containing materials discovered at Osborne Park Hospital

The AMA (WA) wrote to NMHS following reports that asbestos had been identified at Osborne Park Hospital (OPH). The AMA…

Blog 27 Jul 2020
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Addiction psychiatry training: Lessons WA can learn from NSW

The use of substances including nicotine, cannabis, methamphetamines, alcohol and other illicit drugs remains an enormous public health issue in…

Blog 27 Jul 2020
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WA needs addiction specialists to lead the difficult conversations

Drug and alcohol addiction is a health issue with complex biological, psychological and social aetiology. It is a chronic relapsing,…

Blog 27 Jul 2020
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Addiction medicine SOS

Substance and behavioural addictions are abundantly present in communities, and therefore in clinical practice, throughout Australia. Armchair commentary imbued with…

Blog 27 Jul 2020
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What’s ‘leave’ got to do with it?

Not a week goes by at the Australian Medical Association (WA) without one of our Workplace Relations team members receiving…

Blog 22 Jul 2020
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Automated payments a win for all

Central City Medical Centre is set to become the first general practice in Australia to receive automated payments for pre-approved…

Blog 17 Jul 2020
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New and improved Med e-link

The Australian Medical Association (WA) has launched its brand new edition of Med e-link – in more ways than one!…

Blog 14 Jul 2020
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Uncertainty, COVID-19 and supporting junior doctors

Humans are meaning making machines. We link together information, that is often unrelated, and come up with a story to…

Blog 6 Jul 2020
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Wellbeing must become embedded in the core business of our profession

The mental wellbeing of doctors is, and will remain, a persistent concern. Great strides, however, have been made to progress…

Blog 6 Jul 2020
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General Practice training during a global pandemic – challenges and concerns for the future

GP training is structured very differently from the often rigid arrangements seen in the hospital system, with the vast majority…

Blog 6 Jul 2020
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Raw deal for GP registrars should be no deal

Like all jobs, being a GP registrar has its pros and cons. However, in the 21st century, the cons should…

Blog 1 Jul 2020
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We’re not buying it

Have you ever walked into a supermarket and walked out with a chocolate bar, bag of chips or soft drink…

Blog 1 Jul 2020
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Joining the dots

Medical workforce has always been a challenging issue in Australia. It takes up to 15 years of medical school, junior…

Blog 1 Jul 2020
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The way forward

Over the past three months, there have been many changes afoot in the federal doctors in training (DiT) landscape. Even…

Blog 8 Jun 2020
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Extending kindness…to ourselves

I was fortunate enough in 2002 to attend a talk by Canadian Dr Joe MacInnes, one of the three-member crew…

Blog 27 May 2020
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It’s personal, all right!

Healthcare workers (HCWs), including doctors, run toward COVID-19. After all, medicine is our calling, our identity and the profession that…

Blog 25 May 2020
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Flattening the loneliness curve: Hearing loss, isolation and loneliness

Social distancing and self-isolation are necessary steps in slowing the spread of COVID-19, but for people with hearing loss who…

Blog 25 May 2020
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Junk food marketing in the time of COVID-19

Cancer Council WA’s new campaign – ‘Junk food doesn’t belong in sport’ – is a timely reminder of the proliferation…

Blog 25 May 2020
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Imposter syndrome: Another COVID-19 side effect?

COVID-19. A virus that has changed so much in the lives of so many. Lines at Centrelink. Shops and restaurants…

Blog 29 Apr 2020
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Holding the line

Our latest edition of Medicus was dedicated to those extraordinary doctors who willingly put themselves at risk to serve the…

Blog 28 Apr 2020
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AMA Medical Products plays key role in PPE initiative

AMA Medical Products is playing a key logistical role in supporting healthcare professionals across Western Australia gain access to much-need…

Blog 24 Apr 2020
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Managing your Mental Wellbeing

At a time of disaster and uncertainty, as we are currently experiencing with the COVID-19 pandemic, most people will be…

Blog 11 Mar 2020
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Flashback Friday: What advice would you give your younger self at the start of your medical career?

DR ANGELA JANE ALESSANDRI Associate Professor, School of Medicine, University of Notre Dame, Fremantle. Consultant Paediatrician, Rural Paediatric Service, Child…

Blog 6 Mar 2020
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Why doctors are well-placed to advocate for action on climate change

In 2009, the Lancet called climate change the biggest global health threat of the 21st century (Costello et al., 2009…

Blog 5 Mar 2020
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Climate health: What will happen after the Inquiry in Western Australia finishes?

The Climate Health WA Inquiry is nearing completion, with the final report to be delivered to the Minister for Health…

Blog 4 Mar 2020
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While we burn…

There should not be a need for this article. Unfortunately, in a world where fake news is accepted as fact…

Blog 4 Mar 2020
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Align to the science

Almost 11 years ago, the Lancet published its seminal report: Managing the health effects of climate change, calling it the…

Blog 24 Feb 2020
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Why do politicians always penalise General Practice, and not reward it?

Recent policy choices by the Federal Government, to first place a limit on indexing, then restart without any catch-up, once…

Blog 24 Feb 2020
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Right care, right time, right place

With the Federal Government intending to develop and implement a 10-year Primary Health Care Plan, the AMA has developed a…

Blog 21 Feb 2020
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More questions than answers

Even before SARS in 2002, the AMA was calling for the establishment of a national Centre for Disease Control (CDC),…

Blog 7 Feb 2020
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Public Holiday Pay

WA HEALTH PUBLIC HOLIDAY PAY Hours worked on a public holiday shall attract a penalty of 150 per cent, or,…

Blog 7 Jan 2020
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Perkins researcher develops tool to target the right vein, the first time

A medical device start-up established at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research, is aiming to help patients undergoing one…

Blog 24 Dec 2019
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Southern Calling

For our final rural trip of 2019, a group of 24 Dr YES volunteers embarked on a five-day visit to…

Blog 23 Dec 2019
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Christmas Kindness on the Wards

There are a few things that can make working the wards difficult at Christmas – being separated from family and…

Blog 23 Dec 2019
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A Wild Ride

The past year in health is best described as a rollercoaster of a year, with some incredible highs, some screaming…

Blog 23 Dec 2019
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Health Dept. on Notice

At the end of 2018, the Australian Medical Association (WA) was looking forward to what should have been a formative…

Blog 23 Dec 2019
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Doctor wellbeing dominates conference

Dr Ahmed Kazmi is a doctor based in Western Australia. He is also based in London. He is also a…

Blog 23 Dec 2019
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Understanding need and improved support for rural registrars

This year Western Australian General Practice Education and Training (WAGPET) focused its efforts on understanding community need and better supporting…

Blog 20 Dec 2019
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The key ingredients for revitalising General Practice

Traditionally, December is the time when we reflect on the achievements of the year – the highs and sometimes, the…

Blog 20 Dec 2019
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AMA (WA) Evolution – what inspires you for 2020?

As we undertake the next steps of renewal at the Australian Medical Association (WA) in the coming months, the Board…

Blog 19 Dec 2019
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AMA Recruit – Business Services Overview

AMA Recruit has been providing highly specialised and targeted recruitment services across all industry sectors in Western Australia for more…

Blog 9 Dec 2019
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What the TGA ban on certain breast implants means

In October 2019 the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) banned the use and recalled any implants not yet inserted for…

Blog 9 Dec 2019
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Amazing response to Dr YES

Every year, the AMA (WA)’s award-winning Dr YES program engages with around 10,000 students at metropolitan and rural schools in…

Blog 9 Dec 2019
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Learning to be a ‘great’ doctor

As I sit to write my final column for Medicus as MSAND President, it has been nice to take stock…

Blog 5 Dec 2019
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Morale in General Practice: Is the glass filling up?

This month’s Medicus magazine focused on morale in our hospitals – but what about morale amongst us general practitioners? Some…

Blog 8 Jul 2019
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Flashback Friday: Researchers uncover new sarcoma gene

A team of WA researchers has uncovered new genes that could play an important role in the development of sarcoma,…

Blog 20 Dec 2018
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E-Cigarettes – AMA takes on big tobacco and the vaperatti

The past year has seen numerous blows to the case for e-cigarettes, despite mounting pressure from vaping advocates to relax…

Blog 18 Oct 2018
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Flashback Friday: Supporting GPs to care for senior Australians

Our government is absolutely committed to delivering first-class aged care for senior Australians. Our elders deserve to be treated with…

Blog 16 Oct 2018
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Flashback Friday: Rudeness matters

After 12 months in full time academia, I returned to clinical work early this year. It left me oscillating between…

Blog 26 Nov 2016
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Flashback Friday: The balancing act

Work-life balance is a term that we hear often and like most other professions, the medical community has its own…

Blog 15 Apr 2015
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Flashback Friday: Goodbye ramping, hello corridor care

Ramping is one of the most commonly heard words in Western Australia, but a quick check on its definition provides…

Blog 3 Apr 2015
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Flashback Friday: Leave, great if you can get it

For as long as I’ve been involved with the Doctors in Training Committee, there’s been a permanent fixture on the…

Blog 20 Dec 2014
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Flashback Friday: A good man in a crisis

Dr Andy Robertson knows only too well that if death is the great leveller, then disaster comes a close second.…

Blog 15 Aug 2014
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Flashback Friday: State shame

Well before the onset of COVID-19, and with different diseases in their sights, the AMA (WA) was intent on improving…

Blog 14 Apr 2014
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Flashback Friday: Time to break impasse in mental health treatment

Keith Wilson AM: Former WA Minister for Health; Former Chairman, Mental Health Council of Australia; Director, Meeting For Minds The…

Blog 20 Feb 2014
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Flashback Friday: Can ethics in medicine stand the test of time?

Are ethics in medicine unchangeable? Do they stand the test of time despite advances in modern medicine and the evolving…