AMD Council Communiqué April 2017

Read the highlights of key issues discussed as part of the 01-2017 meeting, held on Friday, 7 April 2017.  
The Adult Medicine Division (AMD) Council welcomed the following new members:
Dr Kristen Lefever, Basic Trainee Representative
A/Prof Girish Talaulikar, ANZSN Representative
Dr Cam McLaren, Advanced Trainee Representative
Dr Neera Vadali, Basic Trainee Representative
A/Prof Ashim Sinha, ESA Representative

Members noted that it was the last AMD Council meeting for A/Prof Mitra Guha and Dr Humphrey Pullon as their third consecutive terms were coming to a close in May 2017. A/Prof Guha and Dr Pullon were thanked for their valuable contributions during their terms as Chair of the AMD Education Committee and Chair of the New Zealand AMD Committee respectively.


Board Reform: AMD interaction with the new RACP Board

Members discussed Board reform and how the AMD will interact with the new smaller, skills-based College Board which will come into effect in May 2018. The new Board arrangements mean that the AMD will no longer have four representatives on the Board; however, the new Board arrangements will require at least one Board member to be a member of the Adult Medicine Division. Members agreed that this is a topic for ongoing conversation and specialty society input is essential to ensure any subsequent changes in AMD operations are successful. It was agreed that this item would be discussed further at the August AMD Council meeting.

AMD Work Plan: Workforce Data Reconciliation Project – Survey Report

Members reviewed the workforce survey report and discussed the urgency and importance of this issue. It was noted that the appointed Director Professional Affairs will assist to drive workforce activity in the College. It was expected that the College workforce survey would be sent out with the 2018 subscription fees with a clear explanation of why the College is requesting the information. Members were encouraged to complete the survey and also urge their colleagues to complete it. 

AMD Work Plan: Policy and Advocacy Lead Fellow Network Project – Survey Report

Members noted the results of the Policy and Advocacy Lead Fellow Network survey that confirmed a dedicated policy and advocacy forum for AMD specialty society representatives was supported by AMD affiliated specialty societies. The forum would provide the specialty societies with a mechanism through which they can discuss policy and advocacy issues of interest. The AMD Council agreed that the revised format of this Network will be developed under the direction of the AMD Executive Committee and in consultation with the Policy and Advocacy Unit. The specialty societies will be approached for nominations to the forum in due course.

Education and Training

AYAM engagement

A/Prof Kate Steinbeck joined the meeting to provide AMD Councillors with an update on Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine (AYAM) activity. Members were advised that the first paediatric trainees have commenced the AYAM training program this year, and the aim is to involve AMD trainees as the program continues.

Site Accreditation

AMD Councillors received an update the RACP Accreditation Review Working Group’s approach to accreditation for basic and advanced training locations and the working group’s next steps, noting the progress that was being made in a large and critical piece of work. It was noted that a consultation on Training Networks Principles would be circulated for their feedback in the near future.

Welfare of Trainees

Welfare of Trainees was discussed in light of recent concerns raised in response to the suicides of three NSW-based trainees. Members were reassured that the welfare of trainees and physicians is one of the College’s highest priorities. An update was provided on the resources that are currently available to members, and it was noted that a College-wide strategic program is under further development. Members were reminded that the RACP Support Program is available for Fellows and trainees, and it was agreed that a progress update will be included on the 02-2017 AMD Council agenda. Specialty societies were encouraged to consider how they can work with the College on this important issue.

RACP and Quality and Safety Leadership

A/Prof Matthew Links, AMD Lead in CPD, provided members with an overview of a proposed RACP Quality and Safety Virtual Group. AMD Council members supported the overall concept of the virtual Quality and Safety group and agreed the College should consider how to progress this idea.

Policy and Advocacy

Advocacy 101

The RACP Policy and Advocacy Unit presented an Advocacy Primer session, providing an overview of how successful advocacy is achieved, and the advocacy framework used by the College to successfully progress policy issues. It was confirmed that a more focused, interactive Advocacy workshop will be held in conjunction with the August AMD Council meeting.

Development of a College position on medical assistance in dying AMD Councillors received an update on the development of a College position on medical assistance in dying. A vote of thanks was made in recognition of the work being undertaken by Prof Komesaroff, Dr Laking and their colleagues on the Euthanasia and Physician Assisted Death working group for their work to date, and for providing focus on the consequences associated with the introduction of legalised euthanasia.


Model of Collaboration Update

Members noted the implementation of the Model of Collaboration (MoC) is well underway with 14 schedules currently being fact-checked across College business units. The intention of the MoC is to provide specialty societies with the opportunity to state their contribution to College activities, and for any grey areas or aspirational collaborations to be resolved and identified.

Members were reminded of the 2016 Webinar Pilot undertaken by the AMD in partnership with the Australian and New Zealand Association of Neurologists (ANZAN) to test out how specialty societies and the College could collaborate to generate live webinars for delivery of continuing professional development (CPD) which would be recorded for access by the wider College membership. Based on the success of the pilot, a business case was approved to expand the Pilot in 2017 to offer 10 specialty societies a webinar series, each with five live webinar sessions. It was confirmed that the successful 10 societies had been selected following a competitive application process, and the webinar series would commence in May. With the expanded pilot, each live webinar is delivered to an audience determined by the specialty society presenting that webinar series, with each webinar recorded and published on the RACP website for RACP members to access as a CPD resource. AMD Councillors expressed considerable interest in monitoring the progress of the pilot and the resulting resources.

Member Engagement

AMD Councillors were presented with the results of the 2016 RACP Member Engagement Survey which showed improvements in members’ perception of the value of the College and prompted a fulsome discussion on membership fees and member value. Members were advised that, in an effort to achieve greater transparency, the College had published an outline of how College funds are allocated annually in the September/October edition of the RACP Quarterly. Members were advised that a new Member Journey Mapping project is commencing which will greatly improve the College’s more granular understanding of the needs of its members, and inform how the College can improve its communication with members over the next three to five years.

New Zealand

An update was provided on the activities of the New Zealand Adult Medicine Division Committee which have included the policy and advocacy regarding obesity and the ageing of physicians, September’s General Election and Model of Collaboration discussions with New Zealand based specialty societies. Conversations have also been held with the New Zealand Medical Council regarding re-certification. 

The next meeting of the AMD Council meeting will take place on Friday 4 August, 2017 with an Advocacy Workshop to be held on Thursday 3 August in the late afternoon.

A/Prof Grant Phelps President,
Adult Medicine Division


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