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RACGP NSW&ACT newsletter

4 July 2018

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Hello and welcome to the July edition of the NSW&ACT newsletter.

This month, we have the opportunity to recognise excellence within the field of general practice with the RACGP annual awards. I would like to congratulate the following:

  • Assoc Prof Katrina Anderson for General Practitioner of the Year 2018 
  • Dr Penny Browne for GP Supervisor of the Year
  • Dr Shashenka Withanage for GP Registrar of the Year 2018, and
  • Glebe Family Medical Practice for General Practice of the Year 2018.

Congratulations to all winners.

The RACGP NSW&ACT Board would like to thank all members who submitted nominations and testimonials for their colleagues. It was wonderful to read about the vital work everyone is doing and the impact it’s had on your patients and community. Over the next few months, we will take the opportunity to profile each of the winners, so that you can all have a chance to see the wonderful work being done by these GPs in NSW and ACT.

This year, we have also introduced a new award, the Dr Eric Fisher Award. Established in honour of the late Dr Eric Fisher, this award recognises a newly ratified Fellow who is committed to the wellbeing and self-care of themselves and their colleagues, acknowledging the biopsychosocial factors that contribute to good health and high-quality patient care. If you know a New Fellow who deserves this award, please nominate now. Nomination close on Friday 10 August. Submit your nomination.

I would also like to warmly invite all GPs to attend the RACGP NSW&ACT Faculty Member Meeting to be held at the Smith Theatre in North Sydney on Friday 17 August 2018. Please put a ‘save the date’ reminder in your diary and RSVP on receipt of our official email invitation for the event. 

This year’s meeting will include the official acknowledgement of our GP awards, distribution of Pins, Life Membership and the annual Charles Bridges-Webb Oration. The event is free of charge to members; however, registration is essential for catering purposes. Register now

We are fortunate to have Professor Neville Owen presenting this year’s Charles Bridges-Webb Oration on chronic diseases. Professor Owen will speak about his experiences as a researcher in public and community health in Australia, and the evolution of the field of physical activity and health. He will emphasise the emerging implications of both too little exercise and too much sitting for chronic disease risk, and its relevance for the general practice community. So, please do save the date and join us on Friday 17 August.

Chair Message

Message from NSW&ACT Chair, Assoc Prof Charlotte Hespe

  • 2018 NSW&ACT award winners acknowledgement 
  • Launching the new Eric Fisher Award
  • 2018 Charles Bridges-Webb Oration presented by Prof Neville Owen

Learning and development

Upcoming events

Event Date Location QI&CPD
Developmental disability in general practice Sunday 8 July North Sydney 40 Category 1
Tackling childhood obesity (Part 1) Wednesday 18 July Online 2 Category 2
CPR workshop Tuesday 24 July North Sydney 5 Category 2
Managing patients who are opioid dependent Wednesday 25 July Online 2 Category 2
Prep for PrEP: Prevent HIV from your practice Wednesday 25 July Bryon Bay 5 Category 2
Transition to independent general practice Saturday 4 and Saturday 18 August North Sydney 40 Category 1
Prescribing PrEP for HIV in general practice (Part 2) Tuesday 7 August Online 2 Category 2
Medical receptionist course Thursday 9 and Friday 10 August North Sydney N/A
Charles Bridges-Webb Oration 2018 Friday 17 August North Sydney N/A

NSW&ACT news and events

2018 RACGP NSW&ACT award winners

This month, we have the opportunity to recognise excellence within the field of general practice with the RACGP annual awards. The winners for 2018 are:

  • General Practitioner of the Year 2018 – Assoc Prof Katrina Anderson
  • GP Supervisor of the Year 2018 – Dr Penny Browne
  • GP Registrar of the Year 2018 – Dr Shashenka Withanage
  • General Practice of the Year 2018 – Glebe Family Medical Practice

Congratulations! The Board would like to thank all members who submitted nominations and testimonials for their colleagues.

The Eric Fisher Award

RACGP NSW&ACT is pleased to announce the launch of a new award in honour of the late Dr Eric Fisher. This award has been established to acknowledge a newly ratified Fellow who is committed to the wellbeing and self-care of themselves and their colleagues and acknowledges the biopsychosocial factors that contribute to good health and patient care. 

If you would like to nominate a worthy recipient for this inaugural award, please complete the nomination form and submit it by Friday 10 August 2018.

Submit your nomination.

RACGP NSW&ACT Faculty Member Meeting

Friday 17 August 2018

We warmly invite you to attend the RACGP NSW&ACT Faculty Member Meeting to be held at the Smith Theatre at the Shore School in North Sydney. This year’s meeting will be held in conjunction with the distribution of the 10 and 20-year OSCE Recognition Pins, Life Membership and the Charles Bridges-Webb Oration.

Guest speaker, Professor Neville Owen, will describe his experiences as a researcher in public and community health in Australia and the evolution of the field of physical activity and health, highlighting the outstanding contributions from his collaborators and students.  

View more information.

Register now.

'My Health Record in general practice’ workshop series

Thursday 12 July – Wollongong
Thursday 26 July – Penrith
Thursday 16 August – Coffs Harbour

All Australians registered with Medicare or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs will have a My Health Record created for them by the end of 2018 unless they choose to opt out between 16 July and 15 October. This workshop series will address questions you may have regarding the expansion of My Health Record, including how it may affect your practice and patients.

The RACGP ‘My Health Record in general practice’ workshop will be presented by GPs and is accredited for four Category 2 RACGP Quality Improvement and Continuing Professional Development (QI&CPD) points. 

Light catering will be provided. Each session is free of charge. 

The aim of this workshop means you will be able to:

  1. describe the role of My Health Record
  2. articulate the drivers for the implementation of a national eHealth system
  3. identify scenarios in which the use of My Health Record in a general practice might assist in improving patient care coordination
  4. understand the impact of My Health Record expansion on general practice workflow
  5. make an informed decision regarding participation in My Health Record.

12 July – Wollongong – Register now 

26 July – Penrith – Register now 

16 August – Coffs Harbour – Register now 

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National news and events

Are you interested in acquiring advanced mental health skills without having to leave your practice?

RACGP Rural is now taking registrations for the September intake of the Focussed Psychological Strategies Skills Training (FPS ST). This modular training was developed to address a demonstrated need for GPs to extend their mental health skills in an accessible and flexible manner. The program blends online and peer group learning in four modules and will take approximately 14 weeks to complete.

The FPS ST is eligible for 120 Category 1 QI&CPD points and two Category 2 QI&CPD points, and is accredited by the General Practice Mental Health Standards Collaboration as an FPS skills training.

RACGP Rural is now taking registrations for the September intake of the Focussed Psychological Strategies Skills Training (FPS ST). This modular training was developed to address a demonstrated need for GPs to extend their mental health skills in an accessible and flexible manner. The program blends online and peer group learning in four modules and will take approximately 14 weeks to complete.

One participant stated, ‘This has been an invaluable activity and it has already helped in my everyday practice substantially. Living rurally, I don't think I would have had any other opportunity to learn these skills otherwise’.

The FPS ST is eligible for 120 Category 1 QI&CPD points and two Category 2 QI&CPD points and is accredited by the General Practice Mental Health Standards Collaboration as an FPS skills training.

Participants who successfully complete the program can apply for FPS provider status with Medicare and gain access to additional MBS items for FPS services provided in their general practice.

For more information, the RACGP website.

The RACGP’s Green Book: Putting prevention into practice – Now released

The RACGP’s Putting prevention into practice: Guidelines for the implementation of prevention in the general practice setting (Green Book) has been updated and is now available in its third edition.

The Green Book is a practical resource to support the implementation of evidence-based preventive activities in general practice. It includes real-life case studies and ideas to help illustrate the processes, strategies and tools that practice teams can use, encouraging and reflecting a collaborative, whole-of-practice approach to prevention.

Find out more on the RACGP website.

Webinar: The art of rural ‘locuming’, how your skills are transferable

8.00–9.00 pm AEST, Thursday 9 August 2018

Are you looking for a sea or tree change? Are you looking for new experiences or a bit of an adventure?

This 'locuming' webinar aims to provide insight into what rural GP locum work involves and will provide you with the tools necessary to successfully locum in rural and remote communities.

Listen to experienced GP locums as they recall their challenges and rewards, and have your questions answered.

For more information, view webinar flyer, email RACGP Rural on rural@racgp.org.au or call 1800 636 764.

Proudly presented by RACGP Rural.

RACGP SA&NT Retreat 2018 – Laying the foundations

Saturday and Sunday 18–19 August

The inaugural Retreat 2018 will take place in the beautiful Barossa Valley. This event will incorporate a variety of education sessions presented by high-profile speakers, including a multitude of networking opportunities and social activities.

Enjoy a weekend away and experience the best of the wineries and culinary delights from the world-renowned Barossa region.

View more information

NSW Health updates

Prep for PrEP – Prevent HIV from your general practice in Byron Bay

6.30–9.30 pm, Wednesday 25 July

The RACGP has partnered with the NSW Ministry of Health to deliver a free human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) training series across NSW. This includes the ‘Prep for PrEP – Prevent HIV from your general practice’ workshop in Byron Bay.

The Prep for PrEP workshop will examine the critical role that GPs play in providing PrEP and will outline ongoing management, including HIV and STI testing. It will use interactive methods to explore HIV and STI testing as part of routine care.

Expert facilitators will demonstrate how to use and access practical HIV and STI clinical tools and will walk you through the steps required when a test returns with a positive result.

Register now

Changes in the Immunisation Schedule from 1 July 2018

The National Immunisation Program has been amended (following expert recommendations) to take effect on 1 July 2018. The NSW Immunisation Schedule has been updated to reflect these changes:

  • Pneumococcal (Prevenar 13): The third dose of pneumococcal vaccine will now be given at 12 months of age (previously given at six months). Children with at-risk medical conditions will receive an additional dose of Prevenar 13 at six months of age.

  • Meningococcal ACWY (Nimenrix): A new vaccine that protects against four serogroups of the bacteria will now be given to children at 12 months of age (previously given as Menitorix, meningococcal C–Hib combination). The serogroups covered by Nimenrix are A, C, W and Y.

  • Haemophilus influenzae type b (ActHIB): The Hib component of the meningococcal C–Hib combination vaccine (Menitorix), currently administered at 12 months of age, will be given as a monovalent vaccine at 18 months of age as the ActHIB vaccine.


In order to assist you in implementing these changes, a number of resources are available. These include:

Additional copies of these resources can be ordered by request from NSW Health’s Better Health Centre at NSLHD-BHC@health.nsw.gov.au (ask for the resource/s you require and include a contact name, contact number and delivery address).

A set of frequently asked questions are available from www.health.nsw.gov.au/schedule-changes.

If you require any further information, please contact your local Public Health Unit on 1300 656 132.

External news and events

Creative Doctors invites you to Performers Night 2018

7.00 pm, Thursday 26 July

We are pleased to offer all creative doctors the opportunity to perform to heart’s contentment in front of an especially appreciative audience. We welcome performers of all kinds provided they also happen to be doctors or medical students.

Camelot Lounge has all the facilities you will need for a fine performance. Creative Doctors will gather an audience of colleagues who all know that you are already very good at something else, so why not showcase your other talents? View more information

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