Your best Health Insurance is Your GP v2.0

Yesterday we talked about risk. Risk is mitigated by knowledge and experience. I don’t know who said this, but I’m going to take a wild and crazy guess and say it wasn’t from Terry Pratchett’s wonderful Discworld series. This gives us another way to mitigate risk. Insurance.

Risks come at us everyday in our personal and professional lives. We accept that life involves risk. Risk happens.

‘Life is a risky business, no-one gets out alive’

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Health concerns us all, especially now, and we try to improve our health or at least to manage it. Some risks are foreseeable but some are not. These drive our uptake of health insurance. Health insurance is therefore a bit of a ‘grudge purchase’ – we don’t really want to buy it but we don’t want to do without it. Is it worth the money we pay for it? Some high profile voices say no. A past president of the AMA agrees:

A past president of the RACGP concurred:

if you increase the number of GPs by 1 per 10,000 people the death rate goes down 9%

Dr Bastian Seidel; Past President, RACGP

Your health is your wealth, as the saying goes, and you build wealth by spending wisely.

Some tests, treatments and procedures provide little benefit. And in some cases, they may even cause harm.
Use the 5 questions to make sure you end up with the right amount of care — not too much and not too little.

Do I really need this test, treatment or procedure?

Tests may help you and your doctor or other health care provider determine the problem. Treatments, such as medicines, and procedures may help to treat it.

What are the risks?

Will there be side effects to the test or treatment? What are the chances of getting results that aren’t accurate? Could that lead to more testing, additional treatments or another procedure?

Are there simpler, safer options?

Are there alternative options to treatment that could work. Lifestyle changes, such as eating healthier foods or exercising more, can be safe and effective options.

What happens if I don’t do anything?

Ask if your condition might get worse — or better — if you don’t have the test, treatment or procedure right away.

What are the costs?

Costs can be financial, emotional or a cost of your time. Where there is a cost to the community, is the cost reasonable or is there a cheaper alternative?

Your GP can be a great ally in navigating through the health system, a great support for you in times of need, and a great investment in your health. 

“Patients whose care is well managed and coordinated by their usual GP are less likely to cost the health system more in the long run because their GP-coordinated care will keep them out of hospital.

“Supporting general practice to continue managing these patients – who are growing in number each year – is an investment in health care that can help make the health system more sustainable.”

Past AMA President, A/Prof Brian Owler

PartridgeGP works with you to help you make your best health decisions. We pride ourselves on great communication and we’re ready to share our professional skills and knowledge with you. This is only MORE important now, in the time of a global pandemic with a new vaccine on the horizon. The way forward is clear: make your appointment with us conveniently online right here – or call our friendly reception team on 82953200.

Better, for you.

Want more?

Photo by Miguel u00c1. Padriu00f1u00e1n on Pexels.com

For everyone, we believe that having a usual GP or General Practice is central to each person’s care and recommend that people with any health issues that come to the attention of other health professionals should be advised to attend their usual GP or General Practice rather than a specialised service (ie a place not providing the holistic care a specialist GP would).   If  they say that they don’t have a usual GP or general practice, they should be helped to find one and to actually attend it. Call PartridgeGP on 82953200 or make an appointment online here.

(Hat tip: Dr Oliver Frank)

(TL;DR – Get a regular GP or General Practice and use them!)

Photo by Miguel u00c1. Padriu00f1u00e1n on Pexels.com

If you’re employed, get a side hustle and get into business. If you’ve already got a business, get a network. Want to get started? Find your tribe here!

Photo by Miguel u00c1. Padriu00f1u00e1n on Pexels.com

If you are a great GP or a great Allied Health Professional, and you want to serve your clients or patients to the best of your ability, without worrying about all the non clinical things that get in your way, lets talk. Call Mrs Hayley Roberts on 8295 3200 and have a coffee and chat with us as to how PartridgeGP can help you to help others.

Risk

In 1990 I watched Graham Gooch of England make 333 and 123 in a Test Match against India at Lord’s. It was a different time and a different country. Gooch looked decidedly unathletic (although apparently a fitness fanatic) and I certainly don’t remember the Indian pace attack as anything like the current potent crew. As Gooch approached his three hundredth run, the BBC cut to a horse race showing the usual tin ear of public broadcasters. It was compelling but hadn’t quite reached exciting. For those of you not baptised into the religion of Test Cricket, simply put, one fellow throws a small hard leather ball in a special way (bowling) at some wooden poles (the wickets) from a distance of 22 yards (the pitch) while another fellow (the batsman) uses a wooden club (bat) to prevent this. Other fellows stand around to catch or intercept the ball, and also provide commentary on the batsman’s skill, character, and parentage.

I moved to Australia and one of the instant upgrades was supporting the Australian cricket team. Staying up in 1995 to listen to Steve Waugh wearing bouncer after bouncer after bouncer as Australia finally rolled the West Indies in their own backyard was incredibly exciting. Part of that excitement was risk. The players had arm/chest guards, gloves, pads, boxes, helmets, and increasingly large bats but the spectacle and danger of confronting 140-150 kilometre missiles was enthralling.

It had a lot of value for the players involved and for the audiences in the West Indies, Australia, and around the world. The West Indies are a collection of independent island countries who only come together as the West Indies for cricket. Much the same could be said about Australia and it’s Federation of States (especially in light of recent border shenanigans). Australia had been planning this assault for years. The West Indies were coming off a long period of world domination and were raging against the dying of the light as their great players aged.

Fast forwarding again, I went back to England in 2013 to watch the Australian team play England at Lord’s. One of the Australian players to watch was a star of the future – Phillip Hughes. He didn’t have the most auspicious day at Lord’s but certainly looked a player of the future. It was to be his final Test Match. Hughes was a short man, like many of the great batsmen, and so had become accustomed to bowlers aiming at his chest and head. He was an accomplished player of this style of (short pitched) bowling. Sadly, in 2014, Hughes was batting in a State game and despite all of his protective apparel, was hit in the neck by a short pitched ball. He was incredibly unlucky to be hit in the neck in precisely the wrong spot. Wikipedia recounts:

causing a vertebral artery dissection that led to a subarachnoid haemorrhage. The Australian team doctor, Peter Brukner, noted that only 100 such cases had ever been reported, with “only one case reported as a result of a cricket ball”

The risk that made the matches in the West Indies so enthralling and the risk that added value to that spectacle was the same risk that ended with Phil Hughes’ death. Certainly players, spectators, and officials thought long and hard about this risk afterwards. As a result of this we now have something called a stem guard which is a little bit of plastic that protects that very vulnerable area of the neck. Hopefully this particular type of injury will never happen again with these consequences. The amount of short pitched bowling decreased, for a while, but then returned to previous levels (perhaps regressed to the mean). Then, something else happened. 

Today we can see players like Neil Wagner eulogised for bowling into the batsman’s armpit, shoulder, and head. This line of attack into the batsman’s blind spot can hit them, hurt them, or just put them off their game. Wagner recently won a Test Match for his country like this (with two broken toes).

“Neil Wagner was outstanding,” Stead said. “I’m not sure there are too many individuals that could do what he did in that Test match.

Further statistics during the current Australia vs India test series show a clear advantage gained by short pitched bowling. Furthermore, almost uniquely in top level sport, this involves the some of one team doing what they do best against some of the other team doing what they do worst (bowlers bowling at bowlers batting).  Is this too much risk and who makes this decision and on what basis?

This conundrum – the risk of injury and death versus the benefits of economic value resulting from the spectacle – mirrors some situations we face in medicine and life:

Lockdowns vs Targeted Protection

New Vaccines vs New Viruses

Medication vs Lifestyle

I don’t have a universal answer for this, in cricket, life, or in medicine. I firmly believe that we should have these conversations and come to answers that are transparent and workable. From the macro level in Australia and the world to the micro level in the consult room, I think this is the way we should manage risk. We should be mindful of risk in all of our consultations and all of our dealings with patients. If you would like to be part of a team that can afford and prioritise the time taken to consider risk in each and every consultation and dealing then the way forward is clear: make your appointment with us conveniently online right here – or call our friendly reception team on 82953200 or…

here are the steps!

Photo by Miguel u00c1. Padriu00f1u00e1n on Pexels.com

For everyone, we believe that having a usual GP or General Practice is central to each person’s care and recommend that people with any health issues that come to the attention of other health professionals should be advised to attend their usual GP or General Practice rather than a specialised service (ie a place not providing the holistic care a specialist GP would).   If  they say that they don’t have a usual GP or general practice, they should be helped to find one and to actually attend it. Call PartridgeGP on 82953200 or make an appointment online here.

(Hat tip: Dr Oliver Frank)

(TL;DR – Get a regular GP or General Practice and use them!)

Photo by Miguel u00c1. Padriu00f1u00e1n on Pexels.com

If you’re employed, get a side hustle and get into business. If you’ve already got a business, get a network. Want to get started? Find your tribe here!

Photo by Miguel u00c1. Padriu00f1u00e1n on Pexels.com

If you are a great GP or a great Allied Health Professional, and you want to serve your clients or patients to the best of your ability, without worrying about all the non clinical things that get in your way, lets talk. Call Mrs Hayley Roberts on 8295 3200 and have a coffee and chat with us as to how PartridgeGP can help you to help others.

Here We Are: 5 Stories That Got Us To Now

We live in strange days. Humans have always made sense of their lived experience through stories. Here are some, courtesy of the excellent Morgan Housel (yes, this guy).

Three days after Ronald Reagan was inaugurated in 1981, New York City Council President Carol Bellamy joined a group of speakers at a luncheon to discuss the country’s future.

The group tried to make sense of a world that was hardly recognizable from a generation before.

Familiar? Read on!

Things that make you go hmmm

When it all turns to custard, as they say in New Zealand, one of the safest places on Earth (as I type), your GP is there for you. Your GP is, really, your best insurance.

If you’re a patient, looking for a great GP, PartridgeGP is here to help you, safely and well. You can book a face to face or telehealth consult right here.

If you’re a great GP/Allied Health Professional wanting PartridgeGP to provide you awesome services, facilities, and team so you can serve patients to the best of your ability, contact us here, here, or call Mrs Hayley Roberts on 08 8295 3200.

Stay safe. Use your GP!

Here We Are: 5 Stories That Got Us To Now

We live in strange days. Humans have always made sense of their lived experience through stories. Here are some, courtesy of the excellent Morgan Housel (yes, this guy).

Three days after Ronald Reagan was inaugurated in 1981, New York City Council President Carol Bellamy joined a group of speakers at a luncheon to discuss the country’s future.

The group tried to make sense of a world that was hardly recognizable from a generation before.

Familiar? Read on!

Things that make you go hmmm

When it all turns to custard, as they say in New Zealand, one of the safest places on Earth (as I type), your GP is there for you. Your GP is, really, your best insurance.

If you’re a patient, looking for a great GP, PartridgeGP is here to help you, safely and well. You can book a face to face or telehealth consult right here.

If you’re a great GP/Allied Health Professional wanting PartridgeGP to provide you awesome services, facilities, and team so you can serve patients to the best of your ability, contact us here, here, or call Mrs Hayley Roberts on 08 8295 3200.

Stay safe. Use your GP!