Are Medically Prescribed Opioids Killing Australians?

In 1996 Oxycontin a drug more powerful than Heroin hit the medical marketplace. It was touted as the cure for any pain, without addiction and without risk. Drug Companies have made many millions from this drug, at the cost of many deaths.
In 2018 we face an evolving crisis following America down a slippery slope, that will cost us our relatives, parents, sons, and daughters if we don’t change.
Partridge Street General Practice is proud to be a low prescriber of opioids, narcotics, and other medications that have NOT been shown to be effective and safe. We will be happy to discuss better options with you right here.

 

Our team – here for You!

Dr Nick Tellis

 

Your Specialist In Life

Dr Nick Mouktaroudis

 

dr nick mouktaroudis at Partridge Street General Practice

Dr Gareth Boucher

 

dr gareth boucher

 

Dr Penny Massy-Westropp

 

 

Dr Penny Massy-Westropp

Dr Monika Moy

 

 

Dr Monika Moy

 

Dr Abby Mudford

 

dr abby mudford at Partridge Street General Practice3

Dr Chrissy Psevdos

 

dr chrissy psevdos at Partridge Street General Practice

 

Dr Katherine Astill

(on Maternity Leave from August 2018)

 

Dr Katherine Astill 1

 

 

join the team

image004585

Do You Even Aged Care?

Last night on the 730 Report we saw several GPs make the point that fewer GPs are providing care to elderly Australians in Nursing Homes and other Aged Care facilities.

See Here

 

TRACY BOWDEN: Dr Joseph is a strong believer in continuity of care.

DR PETER JOSEPH: For patients, they come in and they don’t have to explain things to you, that happened years ago, because you know it.
You learn what’s going on in the family and how that affects their health.
You can also pick subtle changes.

 

What are the solutions?

Dr Stephen Dick suggests the following:

 

The service is not viable financially and is attached with a burden of being on call 24/7, and having to deal with untrained staff triaging patients who are
quite sick with chronic diseases.

The fix:

1. GPs to operate on a salaried basis to service nursing homes, including a callout fee. The FFS model is broken, utterly, utterly broken, when it comes to aged care.


2. Legislated nurse to patient ratios – both RN to patient and carer to patient ratios.


3. Nursing homes to provide an imprest of basic medications, such as antibiotics and opioids, for after hours issues.


4. Pharmacies to be contracted to provide medications for the residents from a nationally standardised medication chart on a capitated basis – NO MORE OWING SCRIPTS.


5. Get an accreditor with teeth to do spot inspections and severe fines for companies that flout the rules. First offence – $50,000 fine. Second offence – $200,000 fine, resident fees non-payable and the CEO of the responsible corporation placed under house arrest until rectified. Third offence – Home shut down, bonds repaid in full to residents within 30 days, and residents to stay bond-free when and if the facility reopens.I guarantee that if a hospital suddenly had to find 80-odd hospital beds they’d find a solution quick smart.


6. Diets to be individualised and supervised by a dietitian and speech pathologist.


7. Responsibility for the nursing home to provide access to physio, OT, speech, podiatry, optometry in addition to DT.


8. Homes to have a standardised kit out of medical equipment, such as a diagnostic set, ECG machine, local anaesthetic and suture material, biopsy sets, and a room with a printer and wireless access to a network so that we can attend without having to bring every. Little. Piece. of equipment.

 

 

I suggest some simple rules for Aged Care facilities:

 

advice while Dr Nick Tellis is away

 

 

What are your thoughts?

 

Our team – here for You!

Dr Nick Tellis

 

Your Specialist In Life

Dr Nick Mouktaroudis

 

dr nick mouktaroudis at Partridge Street General Practice

Dr Gareth Boucher

 

dr gareth boucher

 

Dr Penny Massy-Westropp

 

 

Dr Penny Massy-Westropp

Dr Monika Moy

 

 

Dr Monika Moy

 

Dr Abby Mudford

 

dr abby mudford at Partridge Street General Practice3

Dr Chrissy Psevdos

 

dr chrissy psevdos at Partridge Street General Practice

 

Dr Katherine Astill

(on Maternity Leave from August 2018)

 

Dr Katherine Astill 1

 

 

join the team

image004585

Alternative…Patients – #kickback edition

Thanks George Forgan-Smith 😉

 

 

It’s the week after the RACGP AKT and KFP exams for some and before a busy week for others. You may be a little flat and the world may seem a bit chaotic at the moment so I thought I’d take a minute to remind us all of how good we have it in Australian General Practice.

 

What are some of the little things your patients have done for you? (#kickbacks 8-)) These are three that come to mind for me:

 

 

 

Sugar free, too 👍👍👍

 

 

 

When the person I squeezed in for an appointment because they were ‘really ill’ stopped the consult to give me a (sugar free 👍) lolly when I was coughing at the end of a long day with lots of sniffling kiddies.

 

 

 

A Series of Unfortunate Events

 

 

 

A lovely painting I got for ‘mates rates’ after helping someone through a ‘series of unfortunate events’ (see the main picture!)

 

 

 

Needs banana for scale 🍌

 

 

 

3. A fantastic steak dinner cooked for me when I was spotted sneaking out of the practice clutching a bag of chips on a big on call night.

 

 

 

 

 

What little things have your patients done for you? 

 

 

Sunset at Glenelg

 

 

Take a moment to have a think and feel grateful – we really do have the best job in the world!  👍

 

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 would like to be:

part of a great team where everything is set up to help you help others

helping great patients

near the beach

working fewer hours and earning more with private billing

 

 

join the team

GPs want clinical handovers, not discharge summaries

Partridge Street General Practice 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 Partridge Street General Practice 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 Partridge Street General Practice 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!

 

join the team

 

Partridge Street General Practice is Proud to be a Teaching Practice

Quality accredited by AGPAL

 

Partridge Street General Practice is an accredited General Practice and is further accredited by our Regional General Practice Training Provider GPEx and our local Medical School at Flinders University.

 

 


 

 

This means that the GPs at Partridge Street General Practice are teaching the Doctors and Medical Students who will be the future of medicine in Australia. It’s a big responsibility and a privilege we take very seriously.

 

 

Teaching Practice of the Year

 

 

All of our doctors here at Partridge Street General Practice are fully qualified ‘Fellows’ holding a specialist qualification with either the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (FRACGP) or the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (FACRRM) or both (3-4 years of full time study and 3 exams on top of an undergraduate university medical degree and supervised trainee ‘intern’ year in a hospital). This is our minimum specialist standard and we may have other qualifications and skills.
Our Fellows provide supervision and advice to our Registrars and you may find that they are called in to consult with the Registrar on your case. ‘Registrars’ are qualified doctors who have completed their hospital training and are now embarking on their General Practice training. Some may already have other qualifications in medical or other fields.
We also supervise and teach Medical Students from Flinders University. They are still studying to become doctors. All of us – Fellows, Registrars, and Medical Students – make up the Clinical Team here at Partridge Street General Practice with our excellent Practice Nurses. We all uphold the highest standards of privacy, confidentiality, professionalism, and clinical practice.

 

 

Professional. Comprehensive. Empowering.

 

See just how we do it here.

 

Good luck to all the fantastic GP trainees out there!

 

 

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!

 

The Evidence For Sugar

IMG_1791

How do we get to the left side of this image rather than the right?

 

Probably not with sugar!

 

See the evidence – and read more here

 

IMG_1792.JPG

 

 

You can see any of our Great GPs right here:

 

Dr Gareth Boucher

 

Dr Penny Massy-Westropp

 

Dr Monika Moy

 

Dr Katherine Astill

 

Dr Nick Mouktaroudis

 

Dr Nick Tellis

Care to Plan, Plan to Care

Whichever way you look at it, there is a great little health precinct on Partridge Street! Let us work together to Help You. Care Plans, Team Care Arrangements, Health Assessments, and Mental Health Care Plans may allow You to receive Medicare Rebates for Great Care from Our Team.

 

 

What are all of these Plans and Assessments? Think of Your Medical Care as being made up of two elements – Routine Care and Urgent/Emergency Care. Urgent/Emergency Care is when you see your GP because you’ve been unwell or hurt yourself, or when you present to Emergency with Chest Pain or after a major Accident. Routine Care might be an immunisation or a regular prescription, a Cervical Screening Test or a Skin Check. Imagine if You could have the time to Plan this Routine Care. What would You do?

 

 

Ask Better Questions of Your GP

Let Your GP know what matters to You

Use Allied Health Professionals for Better Health

Spend Quality Time with Our Practice Nurses

 

 

Australian GPs provide Great Care to their patients and part of this is due to prior planning preventing Urgent/Emergency Care. What are Your thoughts on Better Health?

 

 

 

From Medicare:

 

 

 

A chronic medical condition is one that has been (or is likely to be) present for six months or longer, for example, asthma, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and stroke. There is no list of eligible conditions. However, these items are designed for patients who require a structured approach and to enable GPs to plan and coordinate the care of patients with complex conditions requiring ongoing care from a multidisciplinary care team. Your GP will determine whether a plan is appropriate for you.

 

 

 

 

 

Read more here:

 

 

 

PSGP GP Management Plan Information Sheet

 

 

 

PSGP Health Assessment Information Sheet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Your GPs, providing great General Practice Care:

 

 

 

 

Partridge Street General Practice sign

 

 

 

Dr Gareth Boucher

 

 

Dr Penny Massy-Westropp

 

 

Dr Monika Moy

 

 

Dr Katherine Astill

 

 

Dr Nick Mouktaroudis

 

 

Dr Nick Tellis

 

 

 

Great Physiotherapists at Aspire Physiotherapy and Pilates – Sally, Alex, Bret, and Monique

 

 

 

A Great Dietician and Diabetic Nurse Educator – Helen at Family Nutrition and Diabetes Services

 

 

 

A Great Podiatrist – Ryan at Sense Podiatry

 

 

 

A Great Psychologist – Dr Amber Keast

 

 

 

Add Great Nurses at Partridge Street General Practice and all the other Allied Health Services and We have a Great Team to Help You!

 

 

 

img_0766-7

 

 

 

 

Why do Men taking Viagra get More Skin Cancers?

 

Men who use Viagra seem to have a higher incidence of skin cancer! Why?

Have a look here.

At Partridge Street General Practice we believe an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Your skin is the largest organ of your body and Australia has the highest rates of skin cancer in the world. How can we help you?

 

 

Firstly, be SUNSMART. 

 

 

– stay more in the shade

– wear a protective hat (I like the Chappell style broad brimmed cricket hat)

– cover up, long sleeved loose fitting clothing keeps you cool and keeps you safe

– sunglasses (also keep you cool 😎)

– sunscreen (SPF>30, re-apply every 2 hrs)

– limit your time in the sun (is there an app for that?)

 

 

 

 

 

Skin cancers can be split into two main groups, melanoma skin cancers (MSC) and non-melanoma skin cancers (NMSC).  If you have a close family member with melanoma, or you’ve had a past melanoma, you’re at increased risk of melanoma. If you’ve had non-melanoma skin cancer before the age of 40, you’re at increased risk of melanoma. However, you’re far more likely to have NMSC than melanoma and these are the NMSC risk factors:

 

 

 

– fair complexion

– you burn rather than tan

– light eye colour

– light or red hair

– over 40 years old

– male

– multiple solar keratoses

– high levels of ultraviolet exposure

– previous NMSC (60% of those diagnosed with NMSC will have another within 3 years)

– immunosuppression

 

 

So we’ve covered prevention – what next? If you’re in one of the risk groups above or if you’ve got an area of skin you’re concerned about, check it out and write it down.

 

 

 

 

Then see Dr Nick Mouktaroudis here at Partridge Street General Practice for a comprehensive skin check and treatment plan.

 

 

 

Here to Help

 

 

 

Look after yourself – we’re here to help!

 

 

 Any other questions? You can see any of our Great GPs right here:

Dr Gareth Boucher

Dr Penny Massy-Westropp

Dr Monika Moy

Dr Katherine Astill

Dr Nick Mouktaroudis

Dr Nick Tellis