Telemedicine | RACGP | PartridgeGP

The RACGP SA&NT in conjunction with SA Health and a local panel of presenters, will be presenting a webinar update on Telemedicine, discussing tips and tricks related to undertaking telehealth in your practice.

 

WATCH HERE

 

 

Topics to be covered:

·         Discussing the role of telehealth and the consent process

·         New MBS item numbers

·         Registrars working remotely

·         Undertaking paperwork when working remotely

·         E-prescribing Legislation

·         Combining telehealth with face to face consults

·         Rolling Q&A

Date:  Thursday, 16 April 2020

Time: 6.30-7.30 pm

Cost: FREE

Register in advance for this webinar:

https://racgp.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_eGyo0yuBR-iLE0Pvh6YehA

Registrations close 5pm Thursday 16 April 2020.

Presenters:

Dr Emily Kirkpatrick – Deputy Chair, RACGP SA&NT & SA Health COVID-19 GP Liaison Team

Dr Daniel Byrne – SA Health COVID-19 GP Liaison Team

Dr Alvin Chua – RACGP SA&NT Council member

Dr Nicholas Tellis – GP, Owner PartridgeGP

Electronic Prescribing at PartridgeGP

You bet!

Those bits of paper your GP gives you to get medications from your Pharmacist are changing. Scripts are now DIGITAL!

GPs can now send prescriptions to pharmacists electronically as an interim solution during the pandemic. 

As part of the COVID-19 National Health Plan telehealth model, the new interim measure allows GPs to send prescriptions electronically to pharmacists without having to mail out a physical copy of the original paper prescription with a GP’s wet-ink signature.

Patients can then have their script filled and medication delivered to their door, helping to minimise the risk of virus transmission in accordance with social-distancing measures.

‘It’s certainly going to make it easier for practices, because they are being inundated with pharmacists asking them to post prescriptions to them,’
 
‘I know at my practices it’s causing substantial concern.
 
‘We’re getting calls every day from pharmacists saying, “I can’t dispense unless you send me the hardcopy paper”, and we’re saying, “We don’t have the resources to keep running out and buying stamps, and it’s just not safe to put staff in that position”.
 
‘So we’ve had a bit of a stalemate for the last few weeks and this is a great outcome in the short term.’

Dr Nathan Pinksier – GP

As outlined in guidelines issued by the Department of Health (DoH), GPs will be required to do as follows:

  1. Create a paper prescription during a telehealth consultation. This will need to be signed as normal or using a valid digital signature
  2. Create a clear copy of the entire prescription (a digital image such as a photo or PDF including the barcode where applicable)
  3. Send via email, fax or text message directly to the patient’s pharmacy of choice

Schedule 8 and 4(D) medicines such as opioids and fentanyl are not part of the interim arrangement.

While not legally required, the DoH encourages practices that are able to continue sending the original script to pharmacies to do so as soon as possible. All other practices must retain the paper prescription for a period of up to two years for audit and compliance purposes.

Yes!

This is a great step forwards!

Electronic Prescriptions

Changes have been made to Commonwealth legislation to recognise an electronic prescription as a legal form to allow medicine supply. This provides prescribers and patients with an alternative to paper prescriptions. Paper prescriptions will still be available.

Electronic prescribing will not fundamentally change existing prescribing and dispensing processes. It provides patients with greater choice and patients can still choose which pharmacy they attend to fill their prescription.

Under the Australian Government’s National Health Plan for COVID-19, electronic prescriptions are now being fast-tracked to support telehealth and allow patients to receive vital healthcare services while maintaining physical distancing and, where necessary, isolation.

A significant amount of work has already been done to ensure that necessary upgrades to both pharmacy and prescriber software can be done quickly and electronic prescriptions are expected to be available from the end of May.

Electronic prescriptions are an alternative to paper prescriptions which will allow people convenient access to their medicines and will lessen the risk of infection being spread in general practice waiting rooms and at community pharmacies.

Quick links

Information for prescribers 

Information for dispensers

Tokens

The solution being fast-tracked will see a unique QR barcode known as a “token” sent via an app (if you have one), SMS or email. The token will be sent to you from your doctor, which is then presented or sent to a pharmacy, to supply your medication.

The token will be scanned by your pharmacist as a key to unlock the electronic prescription from an encrypted and secure electronic prescription delivery service.

If you have any repeats of a prescription, a new token will be sent to you when the prescription is dispensed. You will need to keep the token to send to your pharmacy when you need to get the repeat filled.

Active Script List

By the end of this year, more functionality will be available and in addition to the token, there will also be an option for your pharmacy to have a list of your active prescriptions in their software, so you don’t have to forward it on.

To get your medicines you will need to prove your identity to the pharmacist and provide consent for the pharmacist to view your prescriptions.

Steps to take in preparation for using an electronic prescription

  • Ensure your address, email address and mobile number are up to date with your doctor and pharmacy.
  • Check that your pharmacy can take an electronic prescription and are delivering medicines.

Your GP at PartridgeGP

Your Pharmacist at Bayside Village Pharmacy

SafeScripts

We’ve written before about how PartridgeGP prefers safer and better options to opioid and benzodiazepine prescribing. These medications do serve a purpose at some times in some patients and so we must be safe.

Victoria has an amazing system – SafeScripts. Let’s get it here in South Australia!

1 December 2018

Hon Stephen Wade MLC
Minister for Health and Wellbeing
Email: Ministerforhealth@sa.gov.au
Street address: Level 9, 11 Hindmarsh Square, Adelaide South Australia
Telephone: (08) 8463 6270
Fax: (08) 8463 6277

Dear Mr Wade MLC,
I understand you are currently learning from other jurisdictions, including Victoria, in regard to better ways to manage the prescribing of high -risk medications. I refer to the SafeScripts information below:

SafeScript is computer software that allows prescription records for certain high-risk medicines to be transmitted in real-time to a centralised database which can then be accessed by doctors (or nurse practitioners) and pharmacists during a consultation with a patient.

The records will be obtained automatically via an electronic transfer of prescriptions through a Prescription Exchange Service (PES) when a prescription is issued or dispensed at a medical clinic or pharmacy. No data entry will be required.

SafeScript will enable doctors and pharmacists to make safer clinical decisions and identify circumstances where patients may be receiving high-risk medicines beyond medical need.

While taking prescription medicines can be beneficial for managing medical conditions, some medicines are harmful if taken in high doses or in combination with other medicines. It is easy to develop a dependence on a high-risk medicine even when the medicine is only being taken for a short period of time to address issues such as pain or anxiety.

The number of overdose deaths in Victoria involving pharmaceutical medicines is higher than the number of overdose deaths involving illicit drugs and, since 2012, has exceeded the road toll. The latest available data, from 2016, shows that 372 Victorians died from overdoses involving prescription medicines, 257 died from overdose deaths involving illicit drugs and 291 died in road accidents.

As a practicing GP, practice owner, resident of South Australia, taxpayer, and voter, this issue is important to me in many ways.

Minister Wade, every day patients are at risk from this information not being available to doctors, hospitals, and pharmacists in South Australia. I ask you to expedite the introduction and adoption of SafeScripts as a matter of public health urgency.

I look forward to your reply and action on this issue and thank you for the time you have taken in reading this letter.

Kind Regards,

Dr Nick Tellis

GP and Owner, PartridgeGP
Chairman, Southern Regional GP Council
Member, Southern Adelaide Local Regional Network Clinical Council
Adjunct Senior Lecturer, College of Medicine and Public Health, Flinders University
Co Administrator on GPs Down Under – Facebook Networking Group for GPs

Discharge summary versus clinical handover: language matters

PartridgeGP is all about professional, comprehensive, and empowering General Practice care by our GPs. When we refer our valued patients for treatment elsewhere we promote the same high standards, values, and communication  that we provide. A letter, referral, or phone call is just part of the standard PartridgeGP service – it’s good clinical handover. Dr Nick Tellis recently collaborated with some excellent GPs in writing an article for the Medical Journal of Australia’s online Insight Blog on ways to improve communication during these times and stressing the importance of better clinical handover. It’s another one of the ways PartridgeGP provides Better Healthcare for our valued patients. Read on.

 

This article is part of a monthly series from members of the GPs Down Under (GPDU) Facebook group, a not-for-profit GP community-led group with over 6000 members, that is based on GP-led learning, peer support and GP advocacy, and was originally published at the Medical Journal of Australia (MJA) Insight Blog here

 

IN our earlier article we described the concept of “passing the baton” when talking about transfers of patient care. All patients come from their communities and to their communities they shall return. In this transition from tertiary hospital to primary care, they benefit from timely, safe, effective clinical handover as defined in the National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards.

 

In primary care, communication matters, perhaps more so than in tertiary care. Words matter. The language we use matters. It informs thought at conscious and subconscious levels and influences behaviour.

 

The words “discharge summary” evoke feelings of an administrative process at best, and various unsavoury processes at worst. The accidental discharge, the dishonourable discharge, and the smelly discharge all come to mind. The words “clinical handover” instantly sound more professional. They reflect the sort of interaction between clinicians of which we want to be part. Clinical handover is a term familiar to both clinicians and administrators. It is taught in medical schools around the country and practised between junior and senior doctors within our hospitals.

 

Transition of care is well known to be a time of maximum risk: “Adverse events are seen to increase particularly during a transition of care, when a patient is transferred between units, physicians and teams.

 

Clinical handover is a recognised, evidence-based, structured and essential safety mechanism for minimising this risk. Remember, all patients come from their communities and to their communities they shall return. Their community doctor, their primary care physician, is their GP. Patients deserve the best clinical handover we can provide, whether transitioning into or out of our hospitals.

 

Junior doctors in hospitals presently perform the clear majority of clinical handovers to primary care, labelled as “discharge summaries”. According to the Discharge Summary – Literature Review, published by Queensland Health in May 2017 (not available online):

 

 

“Junior doctors perform the clear majority of discharge summaries:

  • Many interns have a flippant attitude to the completion of discharge summaries and have a low perception on the importance of a safe handover of care;

  • Most medical education programs provide minimal education on the completion of discharge summaries;

  • Most interns learn from each other with little input or guidance from registrars and consultants;

  • Interns tend to ‘lump’ discharge summaries together, often completing the summaries on patients they have never met.”

 

 

This frequently happens after the transition has occurred. To borrow from our legal friends, you cannot sell what you do not own. How then can you transfer the care of a patient you have never cared for?

 

 

Junior doctors report that they have limited supervision and lack templates or guides to help them produce a comprehensive and useful handover for community-based care whereas they receive a considerable amount of training for internal clinical handover.

 

 

Medical practitioners frequently use ISBAR (introduction, situation, background, assessment, recommendation) to guide clinical handover. A recent GPDU discussion highlighted that the Gold Coast University Hospital was moving to an ISBAR format for clinical handover to primary care. This was seen by many in GPDU to be a significant step in the right direction. ISBAR for the clinical handover to primary care aligns with hospital handovers and can only improve the transfer of care. Brewster and Waxman recently proposed amending ISBAR slightly to K-ISBAR by adding some kindness into the equation. Taking the opportunity to actively incorporate empathy and understanding into the primary care handover would be a great place to enhance collegiality across community and hospital teams.

 

 

When deciding who is tasked with a clinical handover within the hospital, it is unlikely that this would be handed to the most junior member of the team, and exceedingly unlikely that it would be delegated to someone who had never treated or met the patient. Within hospitals, it is expected that a clinical handover occurs at or before the time a patient’s care transitions to another team or provider. Why should this be any different for the clinical handover back to the GP?

 

 

In our first InSight+ article, we used the analogy of passing the baton. But what happens when the baton is dropped?

 

 

Dr Mandie Villis recently wrote a heartfelt plea for hospital doctors to inform GPs when patients passed away on their watch. Discussions around primary care clinical handover are now occurring around the country and pockets of significant improvement are being made. Momentum is building in regard to formally recognising and changing the language used from “discharge summary” to “clinical handover”. Several hospital and health services have, or are in, the process of implementing “same day” or “24-hour” clinical handover policies, and ultimately the best practice standard will be that this clinical handover occurs at the time of transition of care.

 

 

My Health Record (MHR) has been touted as a partial solution to the problems that have traditionally plagued clinical handover. It is important, however, to remember what MHR is and what it was created for. It is a repository of information for patients – a “shoebox” of documents akin to the jumble of receipts we burden accountants with at tax time. It is not, nor was it designed to be, a communication tool for clinicians. The baton transfer cannot occur within the MHR shoebox. It was not designed to replace current clinical record systems or current communication channels between clinicians. These limitations and precautions are outlined in the RACGP My Health Record guide for GPs:

 

 

“My Health Record is not designed as a substitute for direct communication between healthcare providers about a patient’s care, and should not be used in this manner. Healthcare providers must continue to communicate directly with other healthcare providers involved in the care of a patient through the usual channels, preferably through secure electronic communication.”

 

 

The  Australian Digital Health Agency states:

 

 

“The My Health Record system supports the collection of Discharge Summary documents. When a healthcare provider creates a Discharge Summary document, it will be sent directly to the nominated primary healthcare provider, as per current practices. A copy may also be sent to the individual’s digital health record.”

 

 

Mission creep of MHR is real, with multiple reports on GPDU of GPs stumbling across clinically relevant information in MHR rather than receiving a timely clinical handover. Important clinical information is “pushed” into MHR and the receiving clinician is not “pulled” to it by any sort of notification. There is no handover without closing the communication loop. Health professionals and organisations must ensure that clinical handover occurs with the intended recipient at the time of care transition. A copy uploaded to MHR for the patient to access, as an archive, may serve as a safety net if all else fails, but should not be relied on as the only source of communication.

 

 

Hospital systems must support and value the safety delivered by effective clinical handover to primary care. This will reduce the readmission rates to hospital care and improve the care patients receive. Patient care and practitioner wellbeing should not continue to be compromised due to the hospital culture of a discharge summary being an administrative task undertaken by the most junior team member. The challenges of high administrative burdens, inadequate staffing and unpaid overtime all need addressing. Junior doctors should not be left alone grappling with piles of outstanding discharge summaries to complete on patients they have never met.

 

 

The patient journey can be tracked, important milestones bookmarked, and plans documented as they are formed so that when it’s time for a transition, the “baton” is ready. The need for handover cannot come as a surprise when the patient’s trajectory was plotted from the day they were admitted. Adequate clinical staffing levels with protected time for clinicians to prepare clinical handovers should be a key performance indicator in hospital care. Proactive strategies must be put in place to identify and document who will be receiving the clinical handover. The culture that prevails within many of our hospitals needs to change.

 

 

Safety and quality bodies, such as the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care through its National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards, and the Australian Council on Healthcare Standards through its accreditation regime, can provide effective oversight. All clinicians must lead in continuous improvement in “best practice” for quality and safety in transition of care both into and out of our hospitals.

 

 

Let us recognise and applaud our hospitals and health services leading the way in acknowledging discharge summaries as the clinical handovers that they are. May 2019 bring us all closer to high quality, timely, safe and patient-centred clinical handovers.

 

 

GPDU dragon head-3

 

clinical handover

 

Dr Katrina McLean is a Gold Coast-based GP, Assistant Professor in the School of Medicine and Health Sciences at Bond University, and a GPDU administrator.

 

Dr Michael Rice is past president of the Rural Doctors Association of Queensland, an educator of students and registrars, a long term resident and rural GP in Beaudesert. He’s a keen user of social media.

 

Dr Nick Tellis is passionate about great general practice. He’s a proud GP, beachside Adelaide practice owner, and a happy new father. He blogs at www.partridgegp.com when not administrating on GPDU.

 

Contact Dr Nick Tellis at drnt@partridgegp.com.au or 0882953200 if You are a Great GP and want a Better Place to practice great medicine!

 

 

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My Health Record: Former digital transformation head raises concerns about security of online system – Politics – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

The man appointed by Malcolm Turnbull to transform the Commonwealth’s digital public services has said if he was Australian he would probably opt out of the Government’s controversial online health database.

http://mobile.abc.net.au/news/2018-07-18/my-health-record-former-digital-transformation-boss-has-concerns/10006788?pfmredir=sm

Learn more here!

GPs want clinical handovers, not discharge summaries

PartridgeGP is all about professional, comprehensive, and empowering General Practice care by our GPs. When we refer our valued patients for treatment elsewhere we promote the same high standards, values, and communication  that we provide. A letter, referral, or phone call is just part of the standard PartridgeGP service – it’s good clinical handover. Dr Nick Tellis recently collaborated with some excellent GPs in writing an article for the Medical Journal of Australia’s online Insight Blog on ways to improve communication during these times and stressing the importance of better clinical handover. It’s another one of the ways PartridgeGP provides Better Healthcare for our valued patients. Read on.

 

This is the third article in a monthly series from members of the GPs Down Under (GPDU) Facebook group, a not-for-profit GP community-led group that is based on GP-led learning, peer support and GP advocacy and was originally published at the Medical Journal of Australia (MJA) Insight Blog here

 

“PASSING the baton” describes what health care professionals try to achieve as care of patients is transferred between providers in our complex health care systems. The topic of safe and effective clinical handover comes up repeatedly in discussions on GPDU.

 

It is apparent that the impacts from delayed or poor clinical handover on patient care across the country are significant, under-reported, and have a profoundly negative effect on the care patients receive.

 

Dropping the baton

 

First-hand accounts of treatment delays, duplication of testing, medication errors, and unplanned readmissions are frequently discussed by GPs. Recent clinical case discussions have included a patient in palliative care being transferred to a hospice on a Friday afternoon with no clinical handover, and a 3-month delay in the completion of a discharge summary for a truck driver who was admitted with a myocardial function.

 

The safety concerns related to poor clinical handover are not new: it’s a problem the health care industry and doctors as a profession have been grappling with for decades. Poor clinical handovers are wasteful of limited resources. How can we improve patient outcomes and “drop the baton” less often?

 

Rules of the game

 

The National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards (NSQHS) and the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (ACSQHC) define clinical handover as; “the transfer of professional responsibility and accountability for some or all aspects of care for a patient, or group of patients, to another person or professional group”. Appropriate clinical handover is a requirement of the NSQHS. The ACSQHC notes the importance of “transition of care” that “ends only when the patient is received into the next clinical setting”. The Australian Council on Healthcare Standards EQuIP National Standard 12, in particular, specifies the planned provision of transfer information, including results of investigations.

 

Breakdown in the transfer of clinical information has been identified as one of the most important contributing factors in serious adverse events, and is a major preventable cause of patient harm.

 

Why is clinical handover from hospitals to GPs done so inconsistently for patients transitioning from our major private and public institutions? The benefits of passing the baton smoothly are clear. It’s time to coach the team to get it right.

 

Timing is everything

 

Health services continue to debate the appropriate timeframe for communicating with the GP who is continuing the patient’s care. Timeliness of clinical handover is a topic that comes up frequently. Hospital targets for transfer of care communications vary widely. A recent discussion on GPDU identified several targets within one small geographical area, ranging from “at the point of discharge”, “48 hours after discharge” and “5 days after discharge”.

 

GPDU dragon head-3

 

The reality is that few patients leave hospital with an effective clinical handover. Some will be received within the hospital’s current targets; however, many clinical handovers are not received for weeks, months or, as one post highlighted, years after the patient care is transferred. Some never occur.

 

Many GPs are asking whether these targets are consistent, appropriate, acceptable or safe. A robust discussion took place after GPs were approached to complete a survey that included a question asking what conditions should warrant a discharge summary on discharge, and what the acceptable timeframe for receiving a discharge summary should be.

 

The overwhelming consensus was that the gold standard should be clinical handover on discharge for all patients. Many were frustrated that this question even needed to be asked. Some GPDU members wondered whether this was a trick question aimed at moving the goalposts further away from quality patient care.

 

Services promoting clinical handover to GPs on discharge were highlighted. The Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service was identified as a provider that was actively trying to effect positive change. They received plaudits from the wider GP community simply by having a discharge summary management policy specifying complete discharge summaries available at the time of patient discharge.

 

It is well known in GP circles that starting late ensures that you will run late all day. Timely discharge summaries aren’t late. Timing is everything when you want to be a frontrunner.

 

Don’t fumble the handover

 

The consensus among GPs is that well timed, efficient, effective and safe clinical handover, at or before the point of transition of care is essential. Alternative strategies risk adverse outcomes. Clinical handover must be a standardised process between clinicians.

 

Returning to the athletics track, we can see a clear difference between a handover, a throw, and a drop. Highly trained athletes accept nothing less than a smooth handover – nor should highly trained clinicians. Delegating the handover to non-clinicians, including nurses and medical students, is not good enough. Supervision and ongoing coaching of clinicians is vital.

 

The baton is passed between people not machines

 

Imagine the difference electronic systems could make to this smooth handover. Sadly, this smooth electronic handover exists only in the imagination.

 

In the real world, GPs are grappling with being thrown links to hospital electronic records through systems such as “The Viewer”. Investigations are likely to be uploaded (after a delay) to MyHealthRecord. These are raw data, unfiltered and disorganised, and more of a throw than a handover. Being thrown raw data and being expected to catch them in this way is akin to a hospital doctor being given the login to the GP clinic’s patient management system and being expected to extrapolate a referral.

 

Personal bests are set; medals are won

 

The late Sir Roger Bannister ran the 4-minute mile and reset the expectations for all that followed him. GPs and their discussions can highlight outstanding clinical handovers and applaud initiatives and hospitals that are doing it right. Feedback and constructive criticism can be passed back to hospitals that are raising the bar. Medal-winning performances show the possible and provide a model for future improvement. GPs are uniquely placed to spot the talent and report the score widely and rapidly.

 

Eyes on the prize: what’s the next goal?

 

If we can normalise the clinical handover to young GPs who are the future of general practice, it will encourage them to demand it of their hospitals.

 

Hospitals are incredible places, but the aim is for patients to return home to their communities and trusted GPs. They come home. Their GPs are waiting, willing and able. We can do better, and we will. We extend an open hand to our amazing hospitals. Pass us the baton – we won’t drop it.

 

clinical handover

 

Dr Katrina McLean is a Gold Coast-based GP, Assistant Professor in the School of Medicine and Health Sciences at Bond University, and a GPDU administrator.

 

Dr Michael Rice is past-president of the Rural Doctors Association of Queensland, an educator of students and registrars, a long term resident and rural GP in Beaudesert. He’s a keen user of social media.

 

Dr Nick Tellis is passionate about great general practice. He’s a proud GP, beachside Adelaide practice owner, and a happy new father. He blogs at www.partridgegp.com when not administrating on GPDU.

 

Contact Dr Nick Tellis at drnt@partridgegp.com.au or 0882953200 if You are a Great GP and want a Better Place to practice great medicine!

 

 

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MyHealthRecord – Opt Out Here

We’ve written about the Patient Controlled Electronic Health Record (PCEHR or MyHealthRecord) before – you can have a look at the links below.

 

e-health warning

pay for performance

why i will not use the pcehr

the australian pcehr – success or failure

Info for Best Practice using GPs here

 

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Also – see MJA Insight right here!

 

 

Today we’re going to talk about how NOT to have a MyHealthRecord. Perhaps you don’t think it’s private, perhaps you’re opposed to it for some reason. Perhaps you just don’t want one. Read on.

 

 

The Australian Government is expanding My Health Record for all Australians in 2018.

 

 

By the end of 2018, a My Health Record will be created for every Australian unless they choose not to have one.

 

 

How can I opt out?

 

If you decide that you don’t want a My Health Record created on your behalf, you will have the opportunity to tell us during a three-month period.

 

This period will run from 16 July to 15 October 2018. It’s not possible to opt out of having a My Health Record before this period starts on 16 July 2018.

 

 

Opt Out Here!

 

 

 

 

book online at Partridge Street General Practice

Partridge Street General Practice is all about quality – professional, comprehensive, and empowering General Practice. You can make an appointment with us right here.

 

join the team

 

Want to be part of the Partridge Street General Practice team? Contact Dr Nick Tellis at drnt@partridgegp.com.au or 0882953200

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GPs Down Under #GPDU

If you are an Australian or a New Zealand GP looking for peer support, advocacy, or learning, GPDU (GPs Down Under) is THE place for you on Facebook!

 

 

Find us here!

 

 

When you apply to join, this is the message you will receive – have your information ready and await a message from your friendly GPDU administrators on Facebook Messenger.

 

 

Thank you for for the information provided with your request to join GPDU, Australia & New Zealand’s closed Facebook group for learning, peer support and advocacy.

 

 

We consider GPDU to be a ‘National Park’, open to all Australian & New Zealand primary care doctors.

 

We don’t mind if you are RACGP, ACRRM, RNZCGP, VR or non-VR, full-time or part time, urban or rural, trainee or Fellow. We are however passionate that we do our utmost best to ensure that members are registered with AHPRA or the NZ medical board, and working in primary care.

 

🔸Can you please provide a screenshot (or photo) or your RACGP dashboard (visible when logged in to the RACGP website. ACRRM RRMEO page, or RNZCGP membership profile.

 

If not already submitted, can you also please provide:

 

🔹A screenshot/photo of your AHPRA registration certificate (or link to webpage)

 

🔹Information linking you to your practice, this may include a copy of a business card with you name and the practice address, training confirmation letter or link to a website with your profile and name.

 

We appreciate that this may seem like a lot to ask and thank you for your assistance in providing the information requested in a timely manner. Please be aware that the GPDU admin team are all busy GPs who take on the admin role on a voluntary basis.

 

Any concerns/questions, or if you are battling with technology and struggling to figure out how to do all of this please let us know. We are more than happy to help out.

 

Thank you – we look forward to having you on board soon!

 

GPDU Admin

 

 

Apply to join GPDU right here!

 

TL;DR

 

When you get the message from admin, send three screenshots back! RACGP/ACRRM/NZ college info, AHPRA info, practice info with you in it and You. Are. In!

 

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We look forward to seeing your application, your Facebook Messenger replies with the required information, and finally and most importantly, your ongoing and valuable contributions to the National Park of learning, peer support, and advocacy that is GPDU!

 

 

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Be Super Kind

Doctors are people too. Is this a controversial statement? I’m going to go further and say doctors are people first. I bring this up because some doctors are amazing but they are still only human. There’s a special respect from me for our rural doctors including rural generalist GPs. To me, they are Superhuman! I look at what I do now, and what I used to do as a rural doctor (within 30km of a major Australian city), and, to quote a popular film it’s not the same game. It may not even be the same sport.

 

 

 

I’ll move to some other popular culture. A guilty secret of mine is that I like comics. One series I really liked (and beware this is a NSFW comic and not for children) is Irredeemable. It’s the story of an alien superman (The Plutonian) who becomes a superhero on Earth. He’s super resilent, can fly, has superhuman endurance…you know, those usual rural generalist abilities. The series opens with a family running for their lives. Heat beams target them. Their house is reduced to rubble. Spoiler Alert – they die. Hovering in midair over their bodies is The Plutonian. What happened?

 

 

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Prior to the above events, the Plutonian was doing his thing, saving people. It’s what he did. Day in, day out, with never a day of rest. He stops a nuclear bomb going off in a packed sports stadium. The crowd goes wild. He stands there, letting his adrenaline drop down. One voice comes to his ears amongst the adulation of the crowd.

 

 

‘What a poser’, or words to that effect. Only a few words, only one person, and buried in a sea of praise. But they were enough. They were too much. Superhumans are human too. Perhaps they are human first too? He snaps and flies off.

 

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I think 14 doctors committed suicide in the last 12 months. I could be wrong about this number. I’m not wrong when I suspect the number that had contemplated suicide was probably much higher. I don’t know the answer but being kind is a good start. Please, be kind. That is all.

 

#bekind

I would love to hear other views on this. We are all professionals or patients or both and we can always improve. Let me know here on the blog (or on our website) – or, if you’re a GP, on the fantastic GPDU FB Group

 

PS: In the same vein, #besuperkind with the RACGP elections coming up – three GPs have thrown their hats into the ring so far – I wish them all the best of luck, a fair hearing, and look forward to the RACGP elections as a beacon of probity and ethical behaviour rarely seen in our country’s elections.

 

Election info here

Voting info here

Dr Karen Price

Dr Chris Irwin

Dr Ayman Shenouda

 

For Patients – Get a Great GP!

(Here’s some we made earlier)

Dr Nick Tellis

Your Specialist In Life

Dr Nick Mouktaroudis

Dr Gareth Boucher

Dr Gareth’s Cycle of Care

Dr Penny Massy-Westropp

Dr Penny Massy-Westropp

Dr Monika Moy

Dr Monika Moy

Dr Katherine Astill

Dr Katherine Astill 1

We look forward to seeing you soon!