AFPHM eBulletin – 29 June 2018

​National Energy Guarantee

The proposed National Energy Guarantee (NEG) is often in the news. Policy makers claim it is ‘agnostic’ with respect to energy sources. However, if implemented, the NEG will mean that Australia will be unlikely to meet our Paris CO2 reduction targets. The Council of Australian Governments (COAG) Energy Council will meet on 10 August this year to consider the NEG, and their support or otherwise is likely to have a big influence on the outcome.

What has this to do with public health? Apart from the obvious implications for climate change, reducing combustion of fossil fuels in electricity generation, transportation and stationary energy has major benefits for public health. The benefits include reducing air pollution, and increasing physical activity while reducing traffic crashes through reductions in car travel. Professor Tony Capon, Professor of Planetary Health at the University of Sydney and an AFPHM Fellow, talks about the health benefits of climate change mitigation in this recent piece on ABC Science.

The article explains the health co-benefits of climate change mitigation, and highlights the financial savings from reducing health costs incurred by air pollution, physical inactivity and the like. The article reminds us that national energy policy is not just political, not just about electricity prices, but is also about public health. We need to ensure that health is firmly on the agenda when decisions are made about Australia’s energy mix.

Associate Professor Linda Selvey
President, AFPHM

A message from your President

Policy and advocacy, an opportunity for the Faculty

Policy and advocacy are core functions for public health physicians. Not surprisingly we punch above our weight in policy and advocacy in the College. Did you know that we have a position statement on Health in all Policies? The AFPHM Faculty Policy & Advocacy Committee led the development of this statement. AFPHM members have also been instrumental in RACP’s climate change and health advocacy activities. In both of these policy areas the need for meaningful action is pressing, and much more needs to be done to protect the health of current and future generations. 

In addition, in spite of the growth in preventable non-communicable diseases, funding for public health across Australia is stagnant at best. Through the College, AFPHM is well-placed to advocate for increasing public health infrastructure in Australia (including workforce). We’re also well-placed to advocate to all levels of government to prioritise the health of our population across portfolios, as we are both physicians and experts in the determinants of health and how to influence them. The broader College is responsive to this as demonstrated by a positive response to Professor Sir Harry Burns’ keynote address at the RACP Congress in 2016. 

In addition, policy and advocacy within the College is supported by a highly skilled and active team, ably led by Patrick Tobin. The RACP is a great vehicle for policy and advocacy but to be successful, it needs the support of an active membership. For AFPHM, this means a strong Faculty Policy & Advocacy Committee (FPAC), supported by members. At the moment, our FPAC needs to be reinvigorated. We need a chair, who will also be a member of the College Policy & Advocacy Committee and AFPHM Council, as well as a membership who ​is passionate and keen to support the College’s policy and advocacy activities in areas of importance to public health. This could well be you. 

There will be an expression of interest process for these roles soon, but in the meantime if you would like to discuss this, please contact me at l.selvey@uq.edu.au

Associate Professor Linda Selvey
President, AFPHM

Webinar: A practical guide to human health risk assessment

Dr Ben Scalley will discuss Human Health Risk Assessment drawing on relevant practical examples from NSW. The talk will include key principles of Health Risk Assessment and some example calculations to further demonstrate the process.

Presenter: Dr Ben Scalley is the Director of the Environmental Health Branch within NSW Health. His role is diverse and includes the responsibility for regulating drinking water safety, swimming pools, and cooling towers. In addition to this his branch runs programs in Aboriginal communities and training Aboriginal Environmental Health Officers. Lastly he is responsible for the assessment of the health risk of developments such as road tunnels and coal mines as well as the assessment of the health risk of specific incidents of chemical contamination.

Date:  Monday, 23 July 2018
Time:  2pm to 3pm AEST

For information on how to join this webinar, visit the RACP website

To watch previous webinars, go to our Youtube playlist.

If you are interested in presenting a future webinar, please contact AFPHM@racp.edu.au.

Applications for research, study and travel grants close soon

Details of all Faculty awards and prizes can be found on the RACP Foundation webpage

AFPHM trainees are encouraged to participate in the regional competitions for the Gerry Murphy Prize. For applications and regional competition dates, contact your regional office. 

Apply now for the following grants and scholarships:

Add the RACP Foundation to your favourites or email foundation@racp.edu.au for further information.​

Funding grants for women's leadership development

Women & Leadership Australia (WLA) is administering a national initiative to support the development of female leaders across Australia’s health care sector. 

The initiative is providing women working in the sector with grants to enable participation in a range of leadership development programs. 

The leadership development programs are part-time and delivered nationally via WLA’s blended learning model. Scholarship funding is strictly limited and will be awarded based on a set of selection criteria being met.

Expressions of Interest 
Find out more and register your interest by completing the Expression of Interest form before 7 September 2018: www.wla.edu.au/health

View RACP Congress 2018 ​​resources

Videos of selected shared sessions and all presentations from RACP Congress 2018 are now online.

Browse through a range of thought-provoking material to stimulate, challenge and inspire you and your work.

The RACP has permission to share all material with you and if a presentation or video is not available it is because permission has not yet been received.

Access now

Expand your end-of-life care knowledge

To help you improve your skills in end-of-life care, the RACP is offering free access to an online course on the topic.

The course begins on Wednesday, 18 July.

For more information visit the event webpage.

Continuing Professional Development Session, Queensland

A series of CPD opportunities for AFPHM members have been presented via the Queensland RACP offices and there is another upcoming event which you can attend either in person or via video/teleconference. Topic and date is:

  • Tuesday, 31 July 2018:  Susan Vlack on Relating Well to People: a mixed methods study of preventive care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in mainstream, urban general practices.

The session will commence at 6pm AEST:

  • RACP Qld office at Unit 20, Level 3 Royal Brisbane Place, 17 Bowen Bridge Road, Herston Qld

or

  • By Zoom video/tele-conference.

RSVP to racpqld@racp.edu.au. Nominate the session you will be attending and whether you wish to participate in person (places are limited) or by video/tele-conference (location from which you will be attending is required; details will then be provided about logging in).

Expressions of Interest

Check the Expressions of Interest page at any time, to find out if there are any opportunities that are of benefit to you.​

Conferences and events

The Royal Australasian College of Physicians publishes notices of events and courses as a service to members. Such publication does not constitute endorsement or mandating of any such events or courses.

Go to the RACP events list at any time to see what events are coming up.

AFPHM contact details

AFPHM Faculty enquiries (including Council and committees):
Executive Officer, AFPHM
Phone: +61 2 9256 9622
Email: afphm@racp.edu.au

AFPHM Education and Training enquiries:
Lia Iliou, Education Officer
Phone: +61 2 8247 6286
Email: publichealth@racp.edu.au

AFPHM Oral Examination enquiries:
Caroline Greenaway, Examination Coordinator, Assessment and Selection Unit
Phone: +61 2 9256 9681
Email: examinations@racp.edu.au

AFPHM training site accreditation inquiries:
Site Accreditation Unit

Phone: +61 2 9256 9674
Email: accreditation@racp.edu.au

AFPHM CPD enquiries:
Office of the Dean (CPD)
Phone: +61 2 8247 6285
Email: mycpd@racp.edu.au
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