23 October 2019

GP19: Next steps for Australian general practice

Australia’s GPs and top health experts have descended on Adelaide for GP19 – the most significant event on the general practice calendar.

The conference is an opportunity to reflect on a busy year and look ahead to the challenges and opportunities facing general practice in 2020 and beyond.

Royal Australian College of General Practitioner (RACGP) Dr Harry Nespolon said that GP19 was better than ever.

“This year’s theme is Your patients. Your community. Your solutions. The conference will feature more than 1,600 delegates and many expert speakers.

“Delegates will learn about the latest in technological breakthroughs, groundbreaking research and clinical skills that can make a real difference to the lives of patients across Australia.”

Dr Nespolon said that the conference would lead to new innovations in general practice.

“GP19 allows us to consider what the future may hold for our GPs and how we can modernise and adapt to provide the highest standard of care for patients.

“We want all participants to think outside the box when considering what the future of general practice should look like.

“PitchFest will empower medical professionals to pitch their innovative solutions to a challenge they have experienced in areas such as health technology and enhancing the patient experience. This could prove a game changer for general practice.”

The President also noted that GP19 was a reminder of why general practice work is so vital to the nation’s health system.

“Australians access general practice more than any other part of the health system with more than two million GP visits every week.

“What every GP participating at GP19 will tell you is that a healthy general practice equals healthy communities. If a person delays or avoids a visit to their GP they may end up in a hospital bed – a scenario that benefits no one.

“So we need government funding to keep pace with the cost of GP services, it’s as simple as that.”

GP19 will feature active learning sessions on:

  • when to prescribe antibiotics. The alarming rise of antimicrobial resistance is risking a return to the pre-antibiotics era of the 19th century
  • GP wellbeing and self-care. Four in 10 GPs have reported delaying treatment or care in the past two years, in part because of mandatory reporting requirements which require doctors to report their colleagues if they believe patient safety is at risk
  • voluntary assisted dying. A panel discussion facilitated by SBS’s Jenny Brockie will explore the role of GPs following voluntary assisted dying legislation coming into effect in Victoria and similar legislation under consideration in Queensland and Western Australia
  • family violence. Mandatory reporting requirements pose many challenges for GPs that must be carefully navigated.

Over 100 clinical topics will be covered including adolescent mental health, menopause, diabetes, pain management and geriatric health.

There will be speeches from the RACGP’s Genetics Advisory Committee Chair Dr Melody Caramins on genetic testing, Dr Sharron Davis on medicinal cannabis prescribing as well as transgender health care expert Dr Nic Brayshaw.

Plenary speakers will include Dr Martin Seneviratne examining artificial intelligence in healthcare and Mark McCrindle of McCrindle Research discussing what the patient of the future might look like.

The full GP19 program is available here.

Media enquiries

Journalists and media outlets seeking comment and information from the RACGP can contact:

John Ronan

Senior Media Advisor