October 2019

Chair report

Message from the Co-Deputy Chair – Dr Jim Berryman

Celebrating our successes

I had the recent honour of joining many others at this year’s RACGP Tasmania Fellowship and Award Ceremony at the Derwent Entertainment Centre in Hobart. After being taken on a ‘satnav’ tour all over Hobart, including Anglesea Barracks, I knew I was in the right place upon spotting so many friends and colleagues, all resplendent in the fantastic Fellowship gowns!

As well as recognising our own achievements, it is wonderful to celebrate the achievements of others. This annual event gives new and not-so-new RACGP Fellows the chance to be involved in celebrating our members, as well as joining with family and friends in the culmination of many years of study and commitment. There were big smiles on the faces of the recipients of Fellowship, highest aggregate exam scores, the Friend of the Faculty award as well as 2019 General Practice Supervisor and General Practitioner of the Year awards. From the point of view of a supervisor, I was very proud to see four past registrars receive awards.

The RACGP awards recognises the significant achievements of RACGP members and I would encourage everyone to get behind these prestigious awards and nominate colleagues and practices for next year.

It was, as ever, a seamless and enjoyable event. A huge credit is given to faculty staff for its success each year.

Accreditation for RACGP Standards for general practices (5th edition)

A brief note for those practice principals who haven’t yet had their practices accredited to the RACGP Standards for general practices (5th edition). There are a number of differences in the latest accreditation round including a rigorous business emergency planning section which may catch some unaware. The aim is to formalise planning for events for a worst-case scenario of a flood or fire. For more information about the standards, visit the RACGP website.

Would you like to support the upcoming OSCE as an examiner?

Working as an examiner for the OSCE component of the FRACGP examinations is a great opportunity for you to contribute to the success of the next generation of Tasmanian GPs. Held twice a year, the examination is delivered with one cycle each in Hobart and Launceston. Training is accessible for first-time examiners. CPD points apply. Contact RACGP Tasmania to find out more.

GP19: The place to come together

The annual RACGP annual conference is fast approaching.  GP19 will run from Thursday 24 – Saturday 26 October 2019 at the Adelaide Convention Centre.
The conference offers that all-too-rare opportunity to come together with like-minded professionals. The program is packed full of interactive clinical sessions on topics of interest to you. It’s not too late to register. The early bird deadline has been removed with discounts applying up to the date of the conference. Take a look at the extensive program or register now.

Dr Jim Berryman
Co-Deputy Chair, RACGP Tasmania.

Calendar of events

RACGP Tasmania upcoming events calendar 2019

Men's health series – Session 1 Wednesday 30 October 2019 RACGP Tasmania, Hobart
Accredited CPR Friday and Saturday 1–2 November 2019 RACGP Tasmania, Hobart
Men’s health series – Session 2 Wednesday 13 November 2019 RACGP Tasmania, Hobart
Men’s health series – Session 3 Wednesday 27 November 2019 RACGP Tasmania, Hobart
FRACGP pre-exam workshop –
Applied knowledge test and Key Feature Problem components
Saturday 7 December 2019 RACGP Tasmania, Hobart

RACGP Tasmania news

Vale Emeritus Professor Peter Mudge AM, MBBS, FRACGP, FAFPHM

We all have role models. Part of growing up also means looking out for people who inspire us, lead us and protect us. It’s inherently human. Often our role models change. Initially, it’s our parents we model ourselves after. Later it is relatives, friends and teachers.

I’ve had many role models in the last four decades, but I was never really satisfied when I asked myself: ‘Do you really want to be like them?’ That all changed in August 2009 when I met Peter Mudge.

I was quite new to Tasmania and our College when I attended my first meeting of the RACGP Tasmania Council in the little country village of Campbell Town. Peter was chairing the meeting at the time, and although I can’t remember any of the agenda items, I certainly will never forget the impression that Peter made. I was not sure why, as I didn’t know much about Peter at the time. That would soon change.

Peter was born in Geelong, but grew up in Mount Gambier. He graduated from the University of Adelaide in 1961 and then worked in Adelaide and Darwin as a junior doctor. He returned to South Australia to work as a rural GP in Berri. There, he started research on Ross River Virus – pioneering work, which was later recognised by the award of the Faulding Prize for Research.

Academic appointments followed: Peter was invited to join the Department of General Practice at the University of Dundee, Scotland, and later followed the call to advance and progress the Department of Primary Care at the School of Medicine at Flinders University, and then the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Tasmania.

In 1988, he became Professor and Chair of General Practice at the University of Queensland. In 1994, he was appointed Foundation Clinical School Dean of the North Queensland Clinical School of the University of Queensland. His work was instrumental in the establishment of the James Cook University School of Medicine in Townsville.

In 1998, he could not resist the call of our beautiful state to come ‘home’. He became Professor of General Practice at the University of Tasmania where he worked until his retirement.

In Peter’s world, the concept of retirement did not exist though. He was President of the Australian Association for Academic General Practice for several years and acted as an advisor to the National Health and Medical Research Council on primary health care research.

In 2002, he became Chair of the RACGP in Tasmania and was elected as Chair of the national RACGP Board the following year at a time when the future of the RACGP was anything but bright. With Professor Michael Kidd as RACGP President, Peter was instrumental in transforming the RACGP into the largest member-based medical organisation in Australia.

Since stepping down from his role with the RACGP Board, Peter served as Chair of the RACGP Foundation, raising funds to support general practice research and general practice education, with a special focus on supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander medical students and young doctors. 

Peter’s awards are numerous. He is the recipient of the RACGP’s Rose Hunt Medal and is one of the select RACGP Life Fellows. Peter was awarded a Doctor of Science honoris causa from Flinders University and in 2016 he was recognised as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM).

At the time, Peter said, ‘My most rewarding legacy is the people I've mentored throughout my life. I've been able to help by giving them a job or helping them with their research.’

For me, Peter has done more and has been more. He was and always will be my sole professional role model. He was the one I aspired to be, he was the one I was longing to be. That’s what I realised at that meeting in 2009. I admired his intellect, conceptual thinking, his vision and his desire to remain curious. However, overshadowing all of this is the enduring gravitas of Peter Mudge. Gravitas – the dignity and decency lived, expressed as if it was the most natural attribute conferred by humanity by virtue of itself.

I knew at the time that living up to Peter would be futile. So I made the best of it by asking his advice on literally anything related to general practice in Australia. We talked about research, education, health policy and our College and I tried to spend time with him whenever that was possible for both of us. Looking through our correspondence over the years, I am overwhelmed by the subtle wisdom Peter expressed in each piece of his writing.

I’ll miss his writings and I’ll miss our lunches. I miss that our lunches always ran way over time (no matter how many other meetings and appointments we had scheduled later that day). I also miss teasing Peter about his choice of wine (it was always his call, of course).

Sometimes, it’s the little things that we recall and the little things that make us reflect. It’s the little things that, after all, make us human.

Vale Peter.

Dr Bastian Seidel 
Immediate Past President, RACGP

Accredited CPR series

Friday and Saturday 1–2 November 2019

As we near the end of the current 2017–19 triennium, RACGP Tasmania will deliver a final suite of CPR courses to assist GPs with fulfilling their requirements for the current triennium.

These time-efficient sessions consist of two components: a pre-reading module and a one-hour practical skills assessment delivered locally.

Currently, we have practical skills assessment opportunities available in Hobart. Places are limited. Register now to secure your place.

Can you help supervise medical students at HealthStop@Deloraine?

Sunday and Monday 3–4 November 2019

Following our very successful preventative health initiative at Agfest, RACGP Tasmania, in collaboration with the University of Tasmania (UTas), have been invited to deliver a similar event at the Tasmania Craft Fair in Deloraine.

Healthtop provides a fantastic opportunity for medical students – to offer blood pressure testing and preventive health advice directly to the public. Students are supervised by UTas clinical lecturers and RACGP GPs who generously volunteer their time to mentor and support our upcoming doctors.

A complimentary Tasmanian Craft Fair entry pass is provided to supervising GPs.

If you can spare an hour or two to assist at HealthStop on Sunday or Monday 3–4 November, we warmly welcome you. Please contact Julia Ray with your availability and preference for day and time.

The Tasmanian Craft Fair will be held at Alverston Drive, Deloraine TAS 7304.

Be exam ready in 2020

Take this opportunity to maximise the quality of your RACGP Fellowship (FRACGP) exam preparations by attending an RACGP Tasmania pre-exam course.

Learn examination techniques and refresh your knowledge across the various domains of general practice to enhance your chances of success.

The final 2019 workshop is now available. Register now.

For enquiries, email Melita Medisauskas, Examination Officer, or call 03 6212 5888.

Let’s talk men’s health

With an emphasis on interactive learning within a small group, this series of two-hour workshops provides high-quality, practical updates on issues that affect men's health.

Men and trauma Wednesday 30 October 2019 Dr Jonathon Lane
Men and addiction,
Men's sexual health
Wednesday 13 November 2019 Dr Nicolle Ait Khelifa and
Dr Louise Owen
Adolescent mental health, 
Adult and older men's mental health
Wednesday 27 November 2019 Mr Jessie Greenwood and
Mr Steve Bradford

Join us from 6.00 pm for light refreshments. The workshops will start promptly at 6.30 pm.

Register now.

National news

New aged care guide – Silver Book

The RACGP Silver Book Expert Advisory Group is pleased to present the new edition of the RACGP aged care clinical guide (Silver Book).

The fifth edition provides GPs with up-to-date information on the complex care of older people. The Silver Book is now published on a newly designed website and will feature three interweaving parts:

  • Part A: Common clinical conditions in aged care (available online now)
  • Part B: General approaches to aged care (early-to-mid 2020)
  • Part C: Organisational approaches to aged care (mid-to-late 2020)

The first section to be published – Part A: Common clinical conditions in aged care – is intended to be used as a point-of-care reference. It is designed to assist in clinical decision making by presenting a snapshot view of the diagnosis and management of a range of clinical conditions.

The RACGP aged care clinical guide (Silver Book) is now available online.

External news

2019 Palliative Care Conference

Building a capable, compassionate and resilient Tasmania 

Thursday and Friday 14–15 November 2019

This conference will bring together leaders in palliative care from across the state and nationally for a two-day discussion regarding the future of the sector and how we can work together to ensure the best possible services for Tasmanians with life-limiting illnesses.  

This conference will be held at Wrest Point Convention Centre in Hobart. To view the program, please visit the Conference website.

Register now.

*Inclusion does not imply RACGP endorsement.

Managing drug dependency in primary care

The Alcohol and Drug Service invites GPs and pharmacists attend a breakfast forum in Launceston or Burnie to discuss current and emerging issues, and contemporary treatment approaches in the area of drug dependence.

Wednesday 30 October 2019 The Sebel Hotel, Launceston
Thursday 7 November 2019 Burnie Central Townhouse Hotel

For more information or to register, please email Marni Lucas or call 03 6166 0776.

*Inclusion does not imply RACGP endorsement.

Oncology education evening

5.45–8.30 pm, Wednesday 30 October 2019

Mersey Community Hospital Oncology Unit invites GPs and practice managers to a cancer education session and open evening. The evening will explore local referral pathways and practical information about services and cancer treatments available in the area.  
For more information or to register, email Sarah Coulson or call 03 6777 6160.

*Inclusion does not imply RACGP endorsement.

Visit recruitGP – the RACGP’s trusted, single source for general practice employment opportunities across urban, remote and rural Australia.

It’s free for RACGP members.

The RACGP does not accept any responsibility for any loss or damage that may result from reliance on, or the use of, any information contained in this newsletter.