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New South Wales COVID-19 updates


This page will be updated with the latest information as it becomes available for GPs in NSW.

The information on this page was last updated: Friday 16 October 2020, 10.00 am AEDT.

You can also find nationally relevant information via the RACGP Coronavirus (COVID19) information for GPs webpage

For up-to-the-minute information, visit the Australian Federal Government Department of Health website and subscribe to receive the bi-weekly COVID-19 newsletter for GPs from the Chief Medical Officer.

  • Public health contact1300 066 055
  • NSW Health key links:
  • PBS changes for 1 September 2020
    • Pembrolizumab for Primary mediastinal B-cell lymphoma (PMBCL):
      As of 1 September 2020, pembrolizumab has been PBS listed for treatment of primary mediastinal B-cell lymphoma. It is Authority Required (In Writing) for initial and grandfather treatment and Authority Required (Telephone/Electronic) for continuing treatment. You can submit your written authority requests for this item for treatment of PMBCL through the Health Professional Online Services (HPOS) secure form upload facility which removes the need to post authority requests to the Agency. Continuing authority requests can be submitted via the Online PBS Authorities system. Find out more. 
    • Chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) or small lymphocytic lymphoma (SLL):
      Acalabrutinib has now been listed for CLL and SLL as Authority Required (Telephone/Electronic). Authority requests can be submitted via the Online PBS Authorities system.
    • Methlyphenidate for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD):
      A new strength, 60mg modified release capsule, has been listed for the treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) as Authority Required (Telephone/Electronic).
    • Additional PBS listings available through the Online PBS Authorities system:
      • Continuing authority requests for pembrolizumab and brentuximab for refractory Hodgkin lymphoma.
      • Continuing authority requests for entrectinib, crizotinib and osimertinib for Stage IIIB or Stage IV NSCLC.
      • Blinatumomab for acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, consolidation treatment and balance of supply for induction treatment
      • Inotuzumab for acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, consolidation treatment
      • Ponatinib and dasatinib for acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, continuing treatment
      • Azacitidine for Chronic Myelomonocytic Leukaemia, continuing treatment
      • Azacitidine for Myelodysplastic syndrome, continuing treatment
      • Midostaurin for Acute Myeloid Leukaemia, continuing treatment
      • Vorinostat for Cutaneous T-cell lymphoma, continuing treatment
      • Lenalidomide for Myelodysplastic syndrome, continuing treatment
  • PBS changes from 1 August 2020:
  • Fitness to Drive – online form
    Transport for NSW has improved online Fitness to Drive medical assessment forms.
    • Real time fitness to drive notification from Transport for NSW
    • Two online forms replaced by 12 specialist focused online forms
    • Pre-population of previous assessment data to new forms
    • Online links to National Assessing Fitness to Drive medical standards
    • When health professionals complete the form online, patients will no longer need to take their paper form to a Service NSW Centre
      Visit NSW Health website for more information.
  • Secondary Triage for Residential Aged Care Facilities in NSW
    Read information on this program for residents and their families and residential aged care facility healthcare workers.
  • Collection of nasal and throat swabs
    Updated NSW Health guideline for Collection of nasal and throat swabs for respiratory virus testing, 7 June 2020, is available at the NSW Health website.
  • Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) CDNA National Guidelines
    Read more about a generic guideline for respiratory viruses, including COVID-19, and is updated to align with current NSW Health recommendations for infection control, and public heath recommendations for respiratory specimen collection from CDNA, as given in the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) CDNA National Guidelines for Public Health Units which is available at the NSW Health website.
  • Shortage of metformin modified-release 500 mg
    The TGA has published its first Serious Shortage Medicines Substitution Notice for metformin modified release tablets. Read more.
  • MASK order forms
    MASKS are available via your local PHN. Apply here.
  • Cremation process
    NSW Health is reviewing the requirements of the cremation process (including viewing the body) in the light of COVID19. The advice for funeral directors about viewing bodies may be useful The process for certifying death is unchanged.


Join the RACGP NSW&ACT Facebook group to chat with your colleagues and stay up to date.


RACGP NSW&ACT, together with NSW Health are delivering regular webinars for GPs in NSW.


Upcoming webinars


View previous webinars

Please see this document for Q&As from the webinars including PPE, testing, pathology labs, self-isolation, and case and close contact.


Podcasts

RACGP has an ongoing series of COVID-19 podcasts to assist you to keep up to date. Most of them are 5–10 minutes long,  you can listen to them anytime.


Practice THAT! is the RACGP NSW&ACT series of podcasts developed to support practice managers in their support of general practitioners. Each Practice THAT! episode provides Practice Managers with expert information and practical advice. Latest episodes:

View all Practice THAT podcasts

Just a GP explores the layered complexities of General Practice through topical discussions about leadership, quality in clinical practice, self-care and wellbeing and GP research. Latest episodes:

View all Just a GP podcasts


Articles

PHN

Phone

Email

Website

Central and Eastern Sydney

1300 986 991

info@cesphn.com.au

http://www.cesphn.org.au

Hunter New England and Central Coast

1300 859 028

info@hneccphn.com.au

http://www.hneccphn.com.au/

Murrumbidgee

(02) 6923 3100

ceo@mphn.org.au

http://www.mphn.org.au/

Nepean Blue Mountains

(02) 4708 8100

admin@nbmphn.com.au

http://www.nbmphn.com.au

North Coast

(02) 6618 5400

enquiries@ncphn.org.au

http://www.ncphn.org.au

Northern Sydney

(02) 9432 8250

info@snhn.org.au

http://www.sydneynorthhealthnetwork.org.au

South Eastern NSW

1300 069 002

info@coordinare.org.au

http://www.coordinare.org.au

South Western Sydney

(02) 4632 3000

enquiries@swsphn.com.au

http://www.swsphn.com.au

Western NSW

1300 699 167

admin@wnswphn.org.au

http://www.wnswphn.org.au

Western Sydney

(02) 8811 7100

wentwest@wentwest.com.au

http://www.wentwest.com.au


RACGP NSW&ACT

Phone: (02) 9886 4700 

Email: nswact.faculty@racgp.org.au

Join the RACGP NSW&ACT Facebook group to chat with your colleagues and stay up to date

 

Revised opioids PBS listings

Commencing 1 Oct, the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) listings for opioid medicines will change. Following feedback received regarding recent changes to opioid analgesic medications listed on the PBS, the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) has recommended additional changes to ensure unimpeded access to opioid medication to palliative care patients.

Further, in collaboration with Services Australia, the Department of Health has restructured the current listings in order to reduce the additional administrative burden. For more information, please view the information and factsheets in the links below:

ANU Quick COVID Clinician Survey – Round 10
ANU conducts a series of survey on regular basis on COVID. Round 10 is open for your feedback on telehealth barriers and workarounds specific to vulnerable populations. Take the survey. To view all previous reports, please visit ANU website.

TGA update
TGA has published two Serious Shortage Substitution Notices as well as a web statement regarding ongoing shortages of medicines containing olmesartan or prazosin as the sole active ingredient.

Free online courses on communicating COVID-19
The University of Melbourne have developed an online course with the Doherty Institute on COVID-19. It is delivered via a series of eight tutorials with the first one available online now. It is FREE and whilst primarily designed for clinicians in primary care and hospital-based settings, it also has a broader secondary audience of pharmacists, nursing and allied health staff, aged care workers, and disability care workers. Enrol here.

Information for patients content
Murrumbidgee PHN has recorded two videos about the general practice during COVID: We're Here For You and GP – We are here for you. Add these to your practice website or create your own.

AH&MRC update
The Aboriginal Health and Medical Research Council has collected the most important information about COVID-19 for their members on their website.

Virtual Health Workforce
RDN is seeking Expressions of Interest (EOIs) from GPs, nurses, allied health professionals, specialists, practice managers and administrators who can provide telehealth support to communities. Complete this EOI form and a member of the RDN NSW Workforce Team will be in touch.