AFRM eBulletin – 10 February 2023
Welcome to 2023 everyone. And a special welcome to new trainees joining our AFRM training program. I hope everyone was able to take a break and recharge their batteries. Even though the year has just begun, there are already some news items for members.
I was able to attend two events last week. Firstly, the launch of the NSW Health Agency for Clinical Innovation Document: Paediatric Rehabilitation Minimum Stands and Toolkit. It is a great resource and our paediatric rehabilitation colleagues are to be congratulated for all their work.
Secondly, the College was invited by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet to have a consultation meeting with the new NDIS review project team. It was a useful meeting discussing both good parts and bad parts of the current NDIS processes including relating experiences of our patients, impact of current systems on the health sector and issues with the intersection of health services and disability services. And of course, discussing the role of rehabilitation physicians in disability management both in health services and the community. As you can imagine the meeting could have gone for hours. The project team listened to us and plan to meet again.
Just this week there has been an important development in the World Health Organization concerning rehabilitation. The WHO Executive Board has produced an important statement on the importance of strengthening rehabilitation in health systems. It is expected to go to the World Health Assembly in May for final approval. If approved, it will be an important document to influence governments regarding the important role of rehabilitation in health care. Crossing fingers it will be approved.
More locally, the AFRM Curriculum Review Committee has been doing a huge amount of work to review our current curriculum. The first draft of the new curriculum has started the process of consultation. If you get an opportunity, please read it and provide feedback.
Congratulations go to one of our AFRM members, Dr Elizabeth Anne Lording (McDonald) FAFRM,
who was awarded the Member (AM) in the General Division in the recent Australia Day Honours. Dr Lording (McDonald) received their award for significant service to medicine, particularly to Multiple Sclerosis rehabilitation and research.
Now on to matters of a more day to day nature:
The new year may have started, but we still have ongoing vacancies on AFRM Committees. If you’ve ever wanted to find out more about how the College works, or want to influence College activities and policy, opportunities still exist for people to join a number of committees. These can be found in the Expressions of Interest section below.
We are currently reviewing all of our current AFRM awards and prizes. A survey is now open for members to provide feedback regarding the awards and prizes. All AFRM members are encouraged to respond, closes 24 February.
Finally, now that we all have new diaries, some dates for your calendar:
- The RMSANZ ASM is going to be held from 10 to 13 September 2023 in Hobart, registration will open in May. 2023 Rehabilitation Medicine Society of Australia and New Zealand 6th Annual Scientific Meeting.
- AFRM Exam dates: (relevant to both candidates and also potential examiners) - Module 1 is scheduled for 11 July 2023 and Module 2 is 27 August 2023.
- The Fellowship Written examination is scheduled for 1 March 2023 and the Fellowship Clinical examination for 13 May 2023. The FWE is not very far away so I send thoughts to all those trainees who have had to hit the new year in full study mode and wish you all success.
Dr Jennifer Mann
Rehab in Review is a surveillance journal of the literature most important to the practice of physical medicine and rehabilitation. The editors of this publication generously provide this publication to the Faculty and all its members at no cost.
View the Rehab in Review January 2023 edition.
In an effort to improve member services, the Faculty is reviewing its award and prize application process.
Please help us by completing the AFRM Awards and Prizes survey – by Friday, 24 February 2023. We encourage all AFRM members to respond to the survey, which should only take approximately three minutes to complete.
A new draft Rehabilitation Medicine Advanced Training curriculum is now open for consultation. This is an opportunity for you to provide feedback and comment on proposed changes to rehabilitation medicine training. Find out more.
An e-learning course, managed by the University of Melbourne, is available on Neurological Rehabilitation. It provides an outline of neurological rehabilitation and covers the basic principles of management of disabilities resulting from a neurological condition.
For more information visit the University of Melbourne website.
APC Prosthetics is hosting a Registrar Teaching Session at Ossur Parramatta, from 2pm to 6pm on Wednesday, 15 February 2023. To register please email firstname.lastname@example.org and provide your name, hospital, and mobile number. For more information, log in to the ROC AFRM community.
2022 End-of-Year requirements for Advanced Trainees
End-of-year requirements for 2022 are due by Tuesday, 28 February 2023.
Complete your Advanced Training Supervisor’s Reports (ATSRs) online. Find out more about the online ATSR pilot here. You can also find full details of your program requirements on the Training Requirements tab of the General Rehabilitation Medicine Program Requirements and the Paediatric Rehabilitation Medicine Program Requirements webpages.
2023 Applications for approval of training
Trainees are required to prospectively apply for approval of training every six or 12 months. Applications for 2023 (or the first six months) are due by Tuesday, 28 February 2023.
Application for Approval of General Rehabilitation Medicine Training
Application for Approval of Paediatric Rehabilitation Medicine Training
Interruption of training
If you are not training in the first half of 2023, but have other program requirements outstanding, you are required to submit an Application for Interruption as soon as possible. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding your program requirements.
Last year we notified you that your Continuing Professional Development (CPD) requirements will be evolving. This is a reminder that as of 1 January 2023, all Australian medical practitioners will need to select a CPD Home.
Did you know that your RACP Fellowship means you already belong to a quality and accredited CPD Home? There are plenty of benefits, resources, and tailored support available to you as part of your College membership.
Remember to also review the 2023 MyCPD Framework webpage for a breakdown of other changes which have taken effect as of 1 January 2023.
If not, can you please take a couple of minutes to complete it? All you need to do is log in to My RACP, click ‘update my work profile’ and answer a few questions about your work activities.
By completing your 'my work profile' you will provide us with valuable insights which we can use to make evidence-based and informed advocacy decisions for improving workforce planning.
The ROC is a secure online forum for all RACP Fellows and trainees, designed to support your needs through a range of innovative programs such as:
Mentor Match which helps you connect with other members based on your mentoring preferences and professional goals. Mentors provide guidance and support to mentees, while mentees are given the opportunity to develop personally and professionally and receive constructive feedback to improve performance and outcomes. This activity falls under the MyCPD Category 2 – Reviewing Performance.
The ROC mobile app will help you get the most out of your online community and connect with other RACP members. The app can be used to initiate discussions, find other members, read the latest posts and share your expertise. Download the app from the App Store or Google Play, or log in via MyRACP.
Ep4: High readmission rates in cirrhotic patients
Hospitalisation rates for cirrhosis are increasing in Australia, in part associated with the high prevalence of obesity and subsequent non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. More concerning is the frequency with which discharged patients are readmitted within 30 days. One systematic review put the average readmission rate at 26 per cent, but the studies cited varied greatly in their inclusion and exclusion criteria, and not much is known from Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand.
In the December edition of the Internal Medicine Journal, researchers at the Austin Hospital Liver Transplant Unit in Melbourne reported a 46 per cent readmission rate among their patients. This was based on a retrospective audit of medical records, which also suggested that a fifth of readmissions might have been preventable. Better adherence to practice guidelines when patients are first hospitalised for cirrhosis may reduce a significant burden on patients and the healthcare system.
- Professor James O’Beirne FRCP FRACP (Director of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service; University of the Sunshine Coast)
- Dr Karl Vaz FRACP (Victorian Liver Transplant Unit, Austin Hospital)
Karl Vaz et al. Rate of early hospital readmission amongst cirrhotic patients is high in Australia: experience from a single liver transplant centre Internal Medicine Journal 2021; 52(12)
Ep5: Hyperglycaemia and COVID-19
In the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, a handful of international studies showed that there was increased risk of adverse outcomes in hospitalised patients comorbid for diabetes. Odds ratios for mortality conferred by pre-existing diabetes ranged from 1.5 to 3.6. What this relationship might be in Australia was not known until researchers in Melbourne retrospectively examined electronic medical records from the two waves of COVID-19 in that city.
The prevalence of diabetes among Melbourne inpatients is around 35 per cent, and in 2020 over 70 per cent of all Australia’s case load was in Victoria. This presented an opportunity to observe the relationship between the conditions with substantial statistical power. But while ICU admission and mortality were more common in those with diabetes than those without, neither diabetes nor hyperglycaemia were independently associated with in-hospital mortality.
In this podcast the authors speculate as to why there was this deviation from patterns observed internationally. A possible explanation involves the receipt of dexamethasone therapy in patients with hyperglycaemia, which was found by other researchers to be preventative for COVID-19-associated mortality.
- Associate Professor John Wentworth FRACP (Royal Melbourne Hospital, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute)
- Dr Rahul Barmanray FRACP (Royal Melbourne Hospital, the University of Melbourne)
- Dr Dev Kevat FRACP (Western Health, Monash University)
- Dr Mohamed Ashraful Islam (Goulburn Valley Health)
Free access to IMJ for RACP members.
This Valentine’s Day, your Member Advantage brings you incredible discounts at retailers including JB HiFi, Temple & Webster, The Iconic, Michael Hill and more! For a limited time only, save 14 per cent on Ultimate Beauty & Spa, Ultimate Him and Ultimate Style/Shopping eGift cards, as well as Gourmet Traveller Restaurant eGift cards*. Available online, 24/7. That's your Member Advantage.
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Member Advantage Australia
Member Advantage Aotearoa New Zealand
- Staff Specialist in Rehabilitation Medicine, Maclean District Hospital, Northern NSW Local Health District
- Rehabilitation Specialist, Brisbane Waters Private Hospital, NSW
- Rehabilitation Staff Specialist, Burnie, TAS
- Specialist Physician - Healthy Ageing and Rehabilitation, South Canterbury, Aotearoa New Zealand
- Rehabilitation Physician, Cairns, QLD
View all positions vacant.
Conferences and Events
- NeuroRehabilitation Sunshine Coast Anatomy and Ultrasound Workshop, Friday, 3 March to Saturday, 4 March 2023, 16 Innovation Parkway, Birtinya, QLD.
- Aotearoa NZ AFRM Symposium 2023, Saturday, 11 March 2023, Te Whanganui-a-Tara, RACP Office, Wellington
- 2023 Upper Limb Amputee Management Course, Monday, 27 March 2023, Online
- 2023 Rehabilitation Medicine Society of Australia and New Zealand 6th Annual Scientific Meeting, Sunday, 10 September to Wednesday, 13 September 2023, Hotel Grand Chancellor, Hobart
- NeuroRehabilitation Sunshine Coast Anatomy and Ultrasound Workshop, Friday, 5 to Saturday, 6 May 2023, 16 Innovation Parkway, Birtinya, QLD
Go to the events list at any time to see what events are coming up.
Rehabilitation Medicine Society of Australia and New Zealand (RMSANZ)
RMSANZ is the professional body for rehabilitation physicians and trainees in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand.
AFRM contact details
Phone: (AUS) 1300 69 7227
Phone: (AoNZ) 0508 69 7227
AFRM Faculty enquiries (including Council and Committees)
AFRM Aotearoa NZ Committee
Executive Officer, DFAC’s AoNZ
Phone: +64 4 460 8142
AFRM education and training enquiries
Phone: +61 8247 6233
AFRM oral examination enquiries
Phone: +61 2 9256 9659
AFRM training site accreditation enquiries
Phone: 1300 MYRACP (1300 697 227)