AFPHM eBulletin – 31 May 2019

Webinar #5 2019: Infectious diseases

Dr Jeremy McAnulty, the Director of Health Protection NSW, will draw upon his experience of working with communicable diseases to demonstrate effective management of infectious diseases in public health. Dr McAnulty will also discuss various control measures for infectious diseases and what to do in the event of an outbreak. 

Presenter:  Dr Jeremy McAnulty 
Date:  Tuesday, 25 June 2019
Time:  3pm AEST
Location: Online

For information on how to join this webinar, please see the event listing on the RACP website

To watch previous webinars, go to our Youtube playlist.

If you are interested in presenting a future webinar, please contact

A message from your President

Earlier this month I participated in the RACP Congress. It was a great event. The plenary speakers were great, as were, I’m pleased to say, the public health stream sessions. I particularly enjoyed the Redfern Oration, delivered by Professor Sandra Eades, our very well-attended session on populism and the John Snow and Gerry Murphy presentations. Both of the latter were of very high standard and I know that the judges had difficulty in selecting the winners. Looking to Congress 2020, we are calling for Expressions of Interest for an AFPHM member to contribute to the planning of Congress 2020 in Melbourne.

At Congress we also had our annual members meeting. We discussed a couple of issues at the meeting that I would like to draw your attention to. Firstly, you will hopefully be aware that the RACP has reviewed our Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Framework in response to requirements by Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) for CPD to include reviews of performance and outcomes as well as ongoing education activities. In response to this the College has revised the framework to include three categories: 

  • educational activities, one credit per hour, maximum of 60 credits 
  • reviewing performance, three credits per hour, maximum of 60 credits
  • measuring outcomes, three credits per hour, maximum of 60 credits. 

These new requirements are in place for 2019. Being a predominantly clinical College, it is not surprising that the activities in the framework for the latter two categories are largely clinical, although more non-clinical activities are in development and will be added to the list. Dr Sharon O’Rourke, lead CPD Fellow, is in the process of developing examples to assist us in completing our CPD. A small number of Fellows are also trialling a multi-source feedback that is being trialled by the New Zealand College of Public Health Medicine. Please go to the CPD site on the RACP website and familiarise yourselves with the listed activities under the categories so that you have time to ensure that you have undertaken eligible activities to meet these requirements. We will update you when we have more information from Sharon or the College in relation to examples or activities pertaining to public health.

At the meeting we also discussed recent changes to the Specialist Training Program (STP) requirements put forward by the Australian Government Department of Health. As you know, the AFPHM training program is heavily reliant on STP posts. A large number of these posts are within state/territory public health units. The new requirements stipulate that each STP post must have 50 per cent of the position in either private (includes non-government organisations) or rural/regional sites. They are implementing these changes as posts come up for renewal. Any posts deemed ineligible will potentially be replaced by an eligible post if the Commonwealth decides to do so. A number of posts, particularly in NSW are being reviewed at present, some of which may be deemed ineligible for funding in this round. We are awaiting the outcome of the Commonwealth’s decision in relation to the recent review. Following an announcement of the outcomes of the review, we will endeavour to speak to the relevant Commonwealth officers about the unique nature of public health training positions and how they often cover wider geographical areas. It would be prudent to not rely on a positive outcome of this advocacy and encourage rural and non-government organisations to apply for STP posts in the next application round, and for regional committees to advocate for more state/territory funding for training positions within their jurisdictions.

Associate Professor Linda Selvey
President, AFPHM

Announcement – Lead Fellow Congress 2020

Following a highly successful Congress 2019, I am pleased to announce that Professor Don Campbell has been appointed to the role of Lead Fellow for Congress 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. Professor Campbell is a recent past President of the Internal Medicine Society of Australia and New Zealand (IMSANZ) and is currently President-elect of the Adult Medicine Division. 

With his interest in and commitment to health system design and fostering medical leadership, Don regards Congress as a unique annual opportunity for College members to meet and be stimulated and challenged to continually strive to achieve better health outcomes for all New Zealanders and Australians.

Congress 2020 will explore how quickly medical science is developing. How can we predict where we will be in five or ten years? How do we keep up when science is changing so rapidly? How do we design a system that puts the patient first? How do we retain the humanity and empathy in what we do; for our patients and for each other? 

These are just some of the themes that will challenge our thinking.

Congress 2020 is being held at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre from Monday, 4 May to Wednesday, 6 May. To register your interest to attend visit the RACP Congress website.

Associate Professor Mark Lane
RACP President


Reflections from the inaugural John Snow Scholarship recipient

A decade has past since I was awarded the inaugural national John Snow Scholarship in 2009, awarded at the World Congress of Internal Medicine 2010, for work on a large global health project at the University of Queensland with a focus on teaching the Millennium Development Goals and Australian Indigenous Health. The scholarship's reflective process consolidated what I'd learned through the project and, as a medical student approaching internship, my mind was opened to the intrinsic exceptional value of public health. This year's group of John Snow finalists were exceptional – their energy and work alluded to the myriad of ways to assess and then influence health through public health initiatives. 

Currently I'm an RACP dual Advanced Trainee (clinical) in infectious diseases and general medicine, with additional medical education commitments. I've maintained a keen awareness of public health at so many levels – within our complex health systems in metropolitan, regional, rural, and remote Australian and international settings, and throughout the great arc of society. Good health is holistic and is largely a complex social product; it is disappointing how little Australian health funding is invested in preventive strategies and uplifting to see the excellent contrast set by New Zealand. 

At RACP Congress I gravitated to many of the AFPHM sessions – it was a relief and inspiring to hear the diversity of speakers and their excellent work. It has been challenging to simultaneously keep up with public health interests at my current stage of training, so I've set it aside to focus on completing clinical qualifications with a definite aim to bring it back into my long term practice after Fellowship. In terms of AFPHM capturing the up-and-coming trainees, a clear target group is the transition after internship – a time when clinical pathways are well-publicised, while junior doctors are often unaware of formal AFPHM training pathways and the limitless potential of public health.  

Dr Nancy Merridew
2009 John Snow Scholarship recipient

AFPHM Annual Members Meeting report

The AFPHM Annual Members Meeting (AMM) was held on Tuesday, 7 May 2019. The 2019 Annual Report was discussed at this meeting, detailing the activities that the AFPHM Council, Education and Policy and Advocacy Committees have been involved in over the past 12 months.

Be the RACP Congress 2020 Committee AFPHM Representative 


The Australasian Faculty of Public Health Medicine (AFPHM) is seeking expressions of interest from AFPHM Fellows to join the RACP Congress Program Committee. 


Auckland recently hosted a highly successful RACP Congress 2019. The vast majority of members who attended rated Congress 2019 as one of the best meetings they had attended this year, with some going so far as to describe it as "best Congress ever" – we encourage you to view the highlights from Day one and Day two.

Congress 2020 will be held in Melbourne 4 to 6 May, and we are seeking expressions of interest from AFPHM Fellows for the role of AFPHM Representative on the Congress Program Committee (CPC).        

The AFPHM Representative will lead the development of the public health medicine stream and will work with the Congress Lead Fellow, Professor Don Campbell and other CPC members and College staff to implement the agreed Congress themes and develop shared interest sessions. This is a key opportunity for AFPHM members to shape the topics and discussions for next year’s Congress.

The AFPHM Representative will:

  • coordinate all content within the public health medicine stream, while linking to the purpose, goals and key themes of Congress
  • collaborate with the Congress Lead Fellow and other CPC members to optimise shared interest sessions and broader Congress program through identifying notable speakers, significant topics and innovative delivery formats
  • attend the CPC fortnightly planning meetings via teleconference
  • participate in email correspondence outside of meetings regarding suggestions and opinions of speakers and sessions
  • actively promote Congress to members

The successful candidate is appointed by the AFPHM Executive Committee.

To apply, submit an expression of interest form and your CV to

RACP Congress 2019 

RACP Congress 2019 took place from 6 to 8 May 2019 at the Aotea Centre, Auckland, New Zealand. While we are still collating feedback the initial responses have been extremely positive with 86 per cent of attendees saying RACP Congress gets better every year and more than half rating RACP Congress as their go-to educational forum. 

Listen to what 2019 attendees have to say about Congress and why you should mark your calendar to attend RACP Congress 2020 in Melbourne from 4 to 6 May next year. 

PCHD President acknowledged for research

Congratulations go to Professor Paul Colditz, who is the recipient of the Queensland Metro North Hospital and Health Service Researcher of the Year award.

Professor Colditz is the President of the Paediatrics and Child Health Division, a past Board Director and current Chair of the RACP Research Committee. He has an extensive research career which has had an enormous impact on improving health outcomes for preterm babies both in Australia and internationally.

Our Research Committee is in capable hands.

Prevent transmission of Group A Streptococcus, Acute Rheumatic Fever Rheumatic Heart Disease 

You may have read the recent RACP Queensland eBulletin article, and seen on the Australian Medical Association website, that there is momentum gathering for more to be done to prevent transmission of Group A Streptococcus, Acute Rheumatic Fever (ARF) Rheumatic Heart Disease (RHD) at every level.

As you are aware, ARF and RHD remain significant health concerns for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, particularly in northern Queensland. In response to this, the Queensland Minister for Health launched the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Rheumatic Heart Disease Action Plan 2018 to 2021. The Action Plan and additional information on ARF and RHD, including clinician and patient resources, can be accessed on the Queensland Health website.

Additionally, in other parts of Queensland, some other groups are disproportionally affected by these diseases: Pacific Islanders, Māori, refugees, migrants from developing countries and those who live in poverty or overcrowded housing.

ARF has been notifiable in Queensland since 1999, but since September 2018, RHD has also become a notifiable condition. Under the Public Health Act 2005 and Public Health Regulation 2018, doctors must now notify these diseases. Both notification forms are available online: ARF, RHD

The process of notification for these diseases requires the diagnosing clinician to complete a notification form and send it to the Queensland RHD Register and Control Program via fax (1300 429 536) or email. Alternatively, you can send it to your local Public Health Unit (PHU).

For further information about these diseases, Queensland Health guidelines and resources for health professionals and fact sheets for patients, please visit the communicable disease control guidance website.

The Australian guideline for prevention, diagnosis and management of ARF and RHD (2nd edition) is also available online and there are further Australia resources available from RHDAustralia, including information about the Queensland Register and Control Program.

Thank you in advance for your support and work to prevent these diseases.

Update: Notifiable Dust Lung Disease Register in Queensland

The Health and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2019 was recently passed by Queensland Parliament. The Act includes changes to the Public Health Act 2005 to provide a legislative framework for a notifiable dust lung disease register (NDLD register). These changes are expected to commence in mid 2019. For further information, please see the notifiable dust lung disease register

Seeking AFPHM representatives for committees

Are you willing to represent your colleagues and be a voice for the Faculty? Would you like to be part of creating positive change within the Faculty? 

The Faculty is currently seeking Expressions of Interest for the following positions on: 

Update and further information on changes to MyCPD

Following the release of the Medical Board of Australia’s Professional Performance Framework, a new 2019 MyCPD Framework came into effect in January 2019.

The 2019 Framework strengthens CPD by engaging Fellows in a range of CPD activities from three categories:

  • educational activities
  • reviewing performance
  • measuring outcomes.

The annual minimum requirement is still 100 credits. Note that there is NO requirement to record credits in all three categories. While Fellows may continue to complete educational activities, they will also need to complete activities that review performance and/or activities that measure outcomes to obtain the minimum of 100 credits. Please also note that there are no mandatory activities.

To give you an overall idea of how you might meet the new requirements there are some worked examples (including an example for academics) of how the new requirements could be met. These examples will not apply to everyone and are designed to give an overall approach to meeting 100 CPD credits.

To help you understand the changes and what they mean for you, further background and frequently asked questions can be found on the RACP website. The background is also covered in two Pomegranate Podcasts – 39 and 40 on rebooting CPD.

Resources have been developed to support you in completing activities in Category 2 – Reviewing Performance and Category 3 – Measuring Outcomes.

Upcoming Continuing Professional Development (MyCPD) Sessions

Two separate MyCPD information sessions in Canberra and Sydney are being held to help you understand what the changes mean for you and why we have made them. There will also be opportunities to ask any questions you may have and speak directly to a member of our CPD team. The Canberra session will be held on Thursday, 18 July from 6pm to 7.30pm and the Sydney session will be held the following week on Thursday, 25 July from 6pm to 7.30pm. 

To find out more, visit our event pages: CanberraSydney.

The CPD team is happy to answer any questions you may have, contact us on the details below.

Phone: 1300 697 227
Overseas: (+61) 2 9256 5444 
New Zealand
Phone: 4 460 8122
Overseas: (+64) 4 460 8122

Register now – AFPHM National Training Days

Calling all AFPHM trainees – the AFPHM is hosting the AFPHM National Training Days for all AFPHM trainees across Australia and New Zealand. This is an opportunity for you to meet other AFPHM trainees and hear from experts in the field of public health medicine. You will be able to discuss topics and further your learning on areas related to your training. Advances in public health research, policy development and advocacy approaches will be explored dynamically and candidly through a selection of topics including climate change, health economics and whole genome sequencing. The AFPHM invites you to participate in discussions with our public health careers panel members and be guided on how to prepare for the AFPHM Oral Examination in our exam preparation workshop. 

Date: Saturday, 15 to Sunday, 16 June 2019
Location: RACP Melbourne Office, Level 2, 417 St Kilda Road, Melbourne
RSVP: by Friday, 31 May 2019

Registrations for the AFPHM National Training Days are now open. Please visit the event website for more information. 

Apply for research awards and travel grants

Apply now for 2020 research funding offered through the RACP Foundation. Upwards of 50 awards with a total value of $2.5 million are available across the different categories: career development fellowships, research establishment fellowships, research entry scholarships, research development scholarships and travel grants.

Full details for these opportunities are available on the RACP Foundation website. Email the RACP Foundation to sign up for updates.

2019 QLD Fellows’ and trainees’ Forum

All Queensland Fellows and trainees are invited to the 2019 Queensland Fellows’ and trainees’ Forum on Saturday, 29 June at the Queensland Children’s Hospital in South Brisbane. 
This free member event is presented by the RACP Queensland Regional Committee. 
Topics include: 

  • financial wellbeing: tax efficiency and reducing financial stress
  • medico legal
  • clinical ethics
  • medical stewardship.

For more information and to register please visit the event webpage

RACP supports OraTaiao's call for action on climate change and health

The RACP sees climate change as one of the most significant public health challenges of the 21st century. Climate change is also an opportunity for public health: reducing greenhouse gas emissions will have health co-benefits, including changes to diet and physical activity levels. In New Zealand, the government introduced the landmark Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill in May 2019 to transition to a zero-carbon society by 2050. 

The RACP is a strong advocate for evidence-based, equitable climate action policies, and recently supported the Revised Call to Action on Climate Change and Health from OraTaiao, the New Zealand (NZ) Climate and Health Council. OraTaiao is focused on raising awareness and acting on the health challenges and health opportunities climate change presents. 

OraTaiao and the RACP recognise that in Aotearoa NZ, action on climate change will mean a whole-of-society transition founded on the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi/The Treaty of Waitangi of partnership, participation and protection. Read more about the work of OraTaiao on their website.

Medico Legal: A physicians update 

Worried about legal matters but don’t know where to turn? As we move through the technology era, social media and online interaction is evolving to play a huge part in the way we interact with patients and other professionals. In addition to this, physicians continue to face legal issues in both civil and disciplinary matters. Join us in Sydney on Saturday, 29 June from 9.30am to 12pm for an informative and insightful workshop in collaboration with Avant Mutual. You’ll be able to learn about your legal and professional obligations from our experienced speakers. 

To find out more visit the event webpage.

Women & Leadership Australia grants

This is the final call for all women currently working in the healthcare sector to express their interest in the current financial year scholarship funding available through Women & Leadership Australia.
This opportunity provides women with funding of between $3,000 and $7,000 to undertake a range of leadership development programs commencing later this year. 
To ensure equitable access to the grants, the funding window has been extended until Friday, 21 June 2019. It is important to note that it is uncertain when these grants will be available again. More information and initial expressions of interest are available on the Women & Leadership Australia website.

The Doctor Dash

The Doctor Dash this Sunday, 2 June 2019 promotes the benefits of exercise and raises awareness for the good mental health of doctors, medical students, nurses and other health professionals. 

You can participate anywhere in the world in your own time, at your own pace and in your Crazy Socks 4 Docs.

My Health Record survey

The My Health Record (MHR) is a secure online summary of an individual’s health information. Over 90 per cent of Australians have a MHR, and healthcare providers authorised by their healthcare organisation can access MHR to view and add to their patients’ health information. 

PricewaterhouseCoopers Consulting (Australia) has been engaged by the Australian Digital Health Agency to review the private specialist sector landscape and develop an understanding of the key opportunities and barriers around driving further adoption of MHR.

This online survey will only take 10 minutes and seeks to gain a better understanding of private practice workflows and the views of specialists and practice staff towards the MHR. 

All survey responses will remain anonymous.

Please contact Jen Vo-Phuoc or Nick Dimitropoulos from PricewaterhouseCoopers Consulting if you would like any further information.

eLearning Module – Cultural Competence

The College has developed a module titled Australian Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and Māori Cultural Competence which is available to all members (login required) via This is a useful module for those wanting a deeper understanding on traditional Australian and New Zealand cultural practices. The module can be completed in your own time and will enhance your clinical practice, particularly when working with Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and Māori communities.

Accredited AFPHM training positions

As a part of the AFPHM training program, trainees are expected to complete their core training in an AFPHM accredited training position.

A list of accredited AFPHM training positions is available on the RACP website.

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 events list at any time to see what other events are coming up.

Expression 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. 

Career opportunities

View all positions vacant

AFPHM contact details

AFPHM Faculty enquiries (including Council and committees):
Rachel Smith, Executive Officer
Phone: +61 2 9256 9622

AFPHM Education and Training enquiries:
Anusha Kumar, Education Officer
Phone: +61 2 8247 6286

AFPHM Oral Examination enquiries:
Examination Coordinator, Assessment and Selection Unit
Phone: +61 2 9256 9681

AFPHM training site accreditation inquiries:
Site Accreditation Unit

Phone: +61 2 9256 9674

AFPHM CPD enquiries:
Office of the Dean (CPD)
Phone: +61 2 8247 6285

AFPHM New Zealand enquiries:
RACP New Zealand Office
Phone: +64 4 472 6713

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