Consultants in Queensland threaten strike action
An unresolved dispute between Visiting Medical Officers and Queensland Health has led to around 70 specialists threatening to leave the public health system.
According to an ABC report, the dispute, which headed to the Industrial Relations Commission last week, is over the quality of regional healthcare.

Coalition releases election health plan
More than $3 billion for extra hospital beds, $90 million for the reintroduction of local hospital boards and $200 million directed at medical research are among the key planks of the Abbott election health plan announced last week.
A federal takeover of hospitals will remain, but on different terms to Labor, while MBS rebates, GP infrastructure and after-hours services are also targeted for major funding boosts, according to The Australian.

Patel appeal set for November
Disgraced surgeon Jayant Patel’s appeal against his manslaughter and grievous bodily harm convictions will be heard in the Brisbane Court of Appeal on 3 November, the Courier Mail reported.
Counsel for the former director of surgery at Bundaberg Hospital lodged an appeal on the basis that that the verdicts were unreasonable and not supported by evidence.

Private health insurance speeds Rudd surgery
The Australian has highlighted the fact former Labor PM Kevin Rudd was able to have his cholecystostomy far sooner, thanks to private health insurance, than if he had waited for surgery in a public hospital.

Stress vaccine in development
Neuroscientists at Stanford University in the US are developing a vaccine against stress which would alter brain chemistry and induce a state of “focused calm”, the UK’s Mail online news service reported.

Risks with traditional Indian medicine
A man admitted to a Sydney hospital with severe lead poisoning after taking traditional Indian medicine has prompted warnings from the NSW Public Health Unit.
The patient self-administered an Ayurvedic medicine preparation, purchased by telephone from India, which contained high levels of mercury, arsenic and lead, according to The Australian.

Dementia numbers to hit a million by 2050
Close to 300,000 Australians will miss out on aged care places by 2050 if the current system is maintained, according to an Access Economics report released last week and reported by the ABC. The report indicates 1 million Australians will have dementia by 2050.

Gift vouchers for new mums to leave hospital sooner

Bed managers around the country may be interested in a novel approach to improving bed block in the Apple Isle.
According to Tasmania’s Mercury, Calvary Hospital is offering vouchers and discount cards at one maternity centre if patients are discharged within three days of delivery with larger incentives for those who leave hospital earlier.

Six-week wait to see a GP in rural Australia

Rural doctors say they are feeling demoralised as they struggle to deal with a blowout in patient waiting times generated by the rural and regional doctor shortage. Patients are waiting more than 6 weeks to see a GP according to an ABC regional report.

Posted 9 August, 2010

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