AMD eBulletin – 19 November 2021

A message from your President

Greetings to all, 

The ROC (RACP Online Community) officially launched communities for all Divisions, Faculties and Chapters (DFaCs) in October. We have already seen some great ideas and member collaboration across a number of topics. I would like to encourage you to get involved in the Adult Medicine Division (AMD) and Chapter Communities and engage with your peers.

The Adult Medicine Division Executive (AMDEX) Committee held their final meeting for the year on 18 November. One of the key projects addressed at the meeting was the development of a leadership course aimed at early to mid-career physicians, clinical leads or those aspiring to clinical lead positions. Stay tuned for more details on this exciting project. 

Registrations have opened for Congress 2022, which is being held in Melbourne, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland and online from 12 to14 May 2022. The Congress program is well underway and I am delighted to advise that Dr Arnagretta Hunter FRACP has agreed to give the Priscilla Kincaid-Smith Oration. Dr Hunter is a cardiologist, ACT Chair of Doctors for the Environment Australia (DEA) and is also a member of the Climate and Health Alliance (CAHA). With a research interest in health consequences of climate change, her clinical work focuses on patient-centred care and preventative medicine, with an interest in social and environmental determinants of health. 

Dr Hunter’s presentation will tie in nicely with the overall Congress theme of ‘A Climate for Change’ and will address the need for a paradigm shift and a broader concept of wellbeing. For more information on RACP Congress, please visit the RACP Congress website

Climate change and health is a strategic cross-College policy and advocacy priority. The College is committed to bringing medical expertise and a focus on human health and justice to the centre of climate change public policy. The RACP has three position statements on climate change and health, which are included later in this eBulletin along with other related submissions and projects. 

If you would like to discuss any of the above, I encourage you to reach out to me via the AMD secretariat at or on the ROC. 

Best wishes

Professor Don Campbell
Adult Medicine Division President

AChSHM President’s Post

I am pleased to advise that our Chapter’s RACP Online Community (ROC) has now launched. I hope you have logged into the ROC and started connecting with other members. The ROC is a secure place for us to share, debate and network. I look forward to meeting and engaging with members (Fellows and trainees) on the ROC.

Applications for the Penelope Lowe Prize are now being accepted. The prize is named in memory of the late Dr Penelope Lowe, a Fellow of the Chapter and former Chapter trainee representative. The prize will be awarded to the best presentation of a case by an AChSHM trainee at the AChSHM Annual Scientific Meeting. We encourage all eligible trainees to apply. Please submit your application before the closing date of Friday, 30 November 2021.

Our next AChSHM Committee meeting is still to be confirmed, but will be in early 2022. If there are any issues you would like to raise with the Committee, or if you have any feedback for us, please contact us through our secretariat at or join us on the ROC.

Professor Kit Fairley
Australasian Chapter of Sexual Health Medicine President

AChPM President’s Post

Our AChPM RACP Online Community (ROC) has now been launched. The ROC provides us with a space to engage with our colleagues – both within our specialty through the Chapter community and also all College members through the ‘Open Forum’. The ROC is open to all Fellows and trainees. I’m looking forward to seeing you there.

I would like to extend my sincere thanks to the volunteers who have signed up to join the Palliative Medicine Marking Panel. We are still looking for more volunteers (Continuing Professional Development credits can be claimed for marking). You can select how frequently you wish to receive assessments and identify periods when you are unable to assist with marking. For more information or to obtain an expression of interest form, please contact

Our next AChPM Committee meeting will be held in early 2022, the exact date is to be confirmed. If you have any feedback, questions or comments for the Committee, please get in touch via our secretariat at, alternatively through the ROC.

Dr Michelle Gold
Australasian Chapter of Palliative Medicine President

AChAM President’s Post

Our Chapter Committee continues to be active in policy and advocacy. Most recently we have focused on ensuring the safe and effective roll out of real-time prescription monitoring (RTPM) for high-risk medications. Access to quality treatment, delivered by a suitably trained workforce, is fundamental for anyone struggling with addiction, and this should be the main priority for policy development and investment in this area. For more information please access the following submission.

The AChAM has been advocating for fairer funding models for opioid treatment in Australia. It made a submission to the Commonwealth Opioid Dependency Treatment Review examining funding models for opioid agonist treatment (methadone, buprenorphine). The AChAM has highlighted inequities in current funding models that place an inordinate burden upon clients and contributes to poor treatment outcomes. The submission includes a range of alternative funding that aim to reduce the cost of treatment for patients, whilst ensuring health practitioners are adequately reimbursed for delivering this essential treatment approach. This submission is available in the policy and advocacy library

The joint AChAM/AFPHM Drug Policy Working Group work will highlight the need for the Australian and Aotearoa New Zealand Governments’ drug policy to adopt a health-focused approach to substance use. The key deliverable is to develop a position statement that will be used by our College to undertake relevant advocacy with key stakeholders, particularly policy makers, to influence government policy. 
The Chapter continues to provide expert input into the College’s ongoing policy and advocacy activities on reducing alcohol harms. 

The AChAM Committee will next meet on Tuesday, 7 December via videoconference. If you have any feedback, questions or comments for the Committee, please get in touch via our secretariat at

Professor Nick Lintzeris
Australasian Chapter of Addiction Medicine President

Climate Change and Health Policy and Advocacy


The RACP has three position statements on climate change and health which form the basis of ongoing advocacy:

RACP members guide our climate change and health work through the Climate Change and Health Reference Group (CCHRG) and other relevant College bodies. Interest in climate change has increased across the College in recent years and our work draws on expertise from many of the College’s medical specialties including public health, occupational and environmental medicine, paediatrics and respiratory medicine. 

The RACP’s advocacy work is primarily directed at governments and works to place health at the centre of climate change discourse. 

Our current calls for action are for:

  • the Commonwealth Government to develop and implement a national climate change and health strategy to coordinate action on health-specific climate adaptation and mitigation across all states and territories
  • an urgent transition from fossil fuels to zero emission renewable energy across all economic sectors, with support to affected communities.

Climate Change and Health Research Project 

Our key priority in 2021 is our Climate Change and Health Research Project on the risk of climate change to healthcare systems in Australia and how best to adapt for and mitigate these risks. This project is more urgent than ever because the increasing frequency and intensity of extreme weather events increase pressure on healthcare systems. We are working with 10 other medical colleges, who are contributing expert input into the project through an Advisory Committee and have partnered with the Monash Sustainable Development Institute and the Climate and Health Alliance to undertake the research.

The report includes a literature review, a policy and institutional analysis and a series of case studies. The draft report was sent to relevant College bodies for input and external medical colleges who have contributed advice and expertise to the project. 

Early findings show that despite a growing number of players taking action to address the impacts of climate change, coordinated system-level action is lacking. The case studies are particularly compelling and include responses to the Black Summer bushfires, rising sea levels in the Torres Strait and the compounding impacts of drought, heat, fire and the pandemic on local communities. The draft report makes clear the strain climate change places on the health system and health workers and makes a compelling case for urgent action. The final report will be released later this year and our advocacy based on the report aims to unite medical colleges as a collective force to bring about climate action to protect health. It will support our advocacy around the next Australian Federal election and form a basis for responsive advocacy thereafter. 

Recent submissions and advocacy

The College has been increasingly involved in climate change advocacy over recent months. The RACP joined the international health community to sign the #HealthyClimate Prescription letter which calls for action to address the climate crisis and was sent to leaders and delegates ahead of COP26. We also recently participated in a joint webinar with the Australian Medical Association (AMA), Doctors for the Environment (DEA) and medical colleges on climate change leadership and action from Australian doctors. You can watch the recording or read the joint letter to the Prime Minister calling for urgent and meaningful action on climate change. 

The RACP has contributed to the development of the Lancet Countdown and MJA-Lancet Countdown policy briefs on Australia’s progress on health and climate change since 2017. Following consultation with relevant member bodies, we endorsed the 2021 policy brief which was released earlier this month. This year the brief focuses on sustainable healthcare, the impacts of heat on work and sport, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander co-design. 

In August, the College provided feedback on the World Health Organization’s COP26 Special Report: The Health Argument for Climate Action which aims to raise the health voice, health arguments and health urgency of tackling the climate crisis and provides recommendations to COP26. The College also provided feedback and suggestions to improve the Victorian Government’s draft Health and Human Services Climate Change Adaptation Action Plan 2022-2026. The draft Plan proposes 14 strategic actions that Victoria’s health and human services system can take during the next five years to address current climate change impacts, reduce barriers to adaptation planning and action, and lay the foundations for transformational adaptation.


RACP Congress 2022 launches

RACP Congress 2022, A Climate for Change, will be taking place both in-person and virtually, in Melbourne and Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland from 12 to 14 May 2022.

This three-day event will feature a range of speakers, panel discussions and workshops exploring the factors that are driving a growing desire for change and what can be done to bring about positive, lasting change. Australasia’s premiere specialist event should not be missed.

Visit the RACP Congress website to explore the program and register to attend. Book before the end of December to secure your early bird pricing.

Opportunities with the RACP Foundation

RACP Indigenous Health Scholarships

The RACP Indigenous Health Scholarship Program supports medical graduates and current trainees of the RACP who identify as Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander or Māori on their chosen career path to becoming a physician. The scholarships provide a funded-pathway through Basic, Advanced, Faculty or Chapter training in Australia and/or Aotearoa New Zealand.

Several scholarships are available for 2022:

Basic, Advanced or Chapter training:

  • College Indigenous Australian and Māori Health Scholarship
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Scholarship
  • Aotearoa New Zealand Māori Health Scholarship
  • Aotearoa New Zealand Pacific Islander Health Scholarship

Faculty training:

  • Indigenous Health Scholarship for Occupational and Environmental Medicine
  • Indigenous Health Scholarship for Rehabilitation Medicine
  • The John McLeod Indigenous Health Scholarship in Public Health Medicine

Applications close Tuesday, 30 November 2021. Further details on these scholarships are available on the RACP Foundation website.

ANZAN Indigenous Scholarship for Advanced Trainees in Neurology

The Australian and New Zealand Association of Neurologists (ANZAN) is offering an annual scholarship providing support to an RACP Advanced Trainee who identifies as Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander or Māori and is undertaking the Advanced Training Program in Neurology. Applications close Tuesday, 30 November 2021. Visit the website for more details. 

RACP President's Indigenous Congress Prize

The RACP President's Indigenous Congress Prize is open to medical students, junior medical officers and RACP trainees who identify as Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander or Māori. The selected applicant will receive support to attend RACP Congress 2022 to gain educational and networking opportunities and exposure to career pathways within the College.

Please encourage anyone you know who is eligible to apply before the deadline on Monday, 31 January 2022. Visit the website for further details.

Best Poster Prize in Adult Medicine

The College awards this prize to a Fellow and a trainee who each demonstrate excellence of hypothesis, scientific merit and oral presentation for a poster presentation at the RACP Congress. Each recipient is awarded AUD$1,000 and a certificate. 

Visit the website for further details. Abstract submissions close Friday, 4 February 2022.

Opportunities for Chapters


Penelope Lowe Prize

The Penelope Lowe Prize is awarded to the best presentation of a case by an AChSHM trainee at the AChSHM Annual Scientific Meeting. The prize includes $500 and a certificate. Applications close Tuesday, 30 November 2021. Visit the website for further details and to apply.

Internal Medicine Journal

The October 2021 issue of the Internal Medicine Journal is now live on the RACP website (login using RACP login credentials). You can now access full journal issues as PDFs using the link to the digital editions on this page. This month’s Editor's Choice is titled 'How do hospitals help patients prepare for and participate in outpatient clinics?'

Other highlights from the issue are:

  • Health impacts of air pollution
  • Gut microbiota and gut disease 
  • Voluntary Assisted Dying: conflicts and interests
  • Aspirin and preeclampsia prevention in women with pre-existing diabetes
  • Dialysis and driving: end-stage kidney disease
  • PET/CT in pregnant patients with cancer

Read now

Become a mentor

We’re excited to announce Mentor Match is open via the ROC (RACP Online Community). Mentoring is a mutually beneficial relationship between two people with the goal of professional and personal development.

We invite you share your knowledge, expertise and advice with other members by registering as a mentor. Watch this short video to see how easy it is to participate.

Once we have 100 registered mentors, we’ll invite members to register as mentees.

Selection into training assessment pilot: What are the attributes of a good physician?

Selection into Basic Training can be highly competitive. We are collaborating with five paediatric and child health training networks and an external test provider to pilot whether a pre-interview assessment tool can help to ensure the most suited applicants proceed in the selection process for Basic Training. 

The pilot will trial the use of an online test called 'Casper', a test to measure a candidate's ability to reflect on and communicate responses to interpersonal and professional dilemmas, in-line with the attributes outlined in the RACP selection criteria and professional practice framework. 

We are seeking input from a broad range of people who interact with physicians and paediatricians on the types of behaviours that represent good professional practice from physician and paediatrician trainees. Although the settings involved in the pilot are all within paediatric and child health training networks the outcomes of the pilot will be evaluated to determine if the tool is fit for purpose for use in the RACP context more broadly, including in adult internal medicine and Aotearoa New Zealand. 

Therefore, we are also seeking input from members involved in Adult Medicine Training Programs. 

Complete this short survey to have your say on the types of behaviours that represent high-quality professional practice by physicians and paediatricians. This short video will guide you through what to expect from the survey. Responses are anonymous and are open until mid-December 2021. 

Share the survey with your physician and non-physician colleagues and patients to help us gain perspectives from a broad range of people in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand. 

Your insights will be used to align the test with the context and performance expectations for RACP Basic Trainees. 

The pilot will be run with applicants for Basic Training at participating pilot settings in mid-2022. More information is available on the RACP website.

The Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care’s Launch of the national standard for acute anaphylaxis

For member information, The Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (the Commission) is launching the first national Acute Anaphylaxis Clinical Care Standard.

Date: Wednesday, 24 November, 1pm to 2pm AEDT
Format: Webcast event and panel discussion

The host, Associate Professor Amanda Walker, and a panel of experts will discuss key areas for improvement addressed by the standard including prompt recognition of anaphylaxis, appropriate treatment and safe discharge and follow-up care.

Full details and how to register can be found on their website

Pomegranate Health Podcast

Episode 75: Feeling Guilty – Medical Injury Part 2 

In the last episode we talked about what patients or their families want to hear after a iatrogenic injury. Despite best practice standards for open disclosure, this occurs far less often that it should. The reluctance from health practitioners to be more transparent is in part due to a misplaced fear of exposure to liability, but perhaps the greatest barrier to incident disclosure is culture of medicine itself. The historic tropes of the infallible physician and the heroic surgeon are still strong today. Though team-based practice has become the norm, many doctors find it hard to admit to a mistake, not just to patients and colleagues but even to themselves. This podcast explores the guilt that can come about from having caused harm, and the cognitive dissonance this creates in one’s professional identity as a healer. 


  • Associate Professor Stuart Lane FCICM (Nepean Hospital; FMH lead for Education, University of Sydney)
  • Professor Simon Willcock FRACGP (Program Head of Primary Care and Wellbeing at Macquarie University; Clinical Program Head of Primary and Generalist Care, Wellbeing and Diagnostics at MQ Health)


Written and produced by Mic Cavazzini DPhil. Music licenced from Epidemic Sound includes ‘Far Away from Home’ by John Glossner, ‘Illusory Motion’ by Gavin Luke, ‘Heart of the River of the Sun’ by Lama House and ‘Struck By You’ by Seroa. Music courtesy of Free Music Archive includes ‘Harbor’ by Kai Engel. Image licensed from Getty Images. Additional voiceovers by Michael Pooley.

Visit the RACP website for a transcript and supporting references. Fellows of the College can claim CPD credits for listening to the podcast and reading supporting resources. 

Subscribe to email alerts or search for ‘Pomegranate Health’ in Apple PodcastsSpotifyCastbox or any podcasting app. Fellows of the RACP can claim CPD credits for listening and learning via MyCPD.

Join the Working Group: Providing Healthcare to Patients with Cognitive Disability 

Expressions of interest are being sought from RACP members and subject matter experts to join a working group to develop a new online learning resource on providing healthcare to patients with cognitive disability. The resource is being developed in response to the Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability. It will address recommendations to improve the education and training of health professionals in relation to people with cognitive disability.

Find out more and apply by Monday, 22 November 2021.

Doctors' Health and Wellbeing Curated Collection

Doctors' health refers to the overall mental, physical and social wellbeing which enables you to practise effectively, as well as to enjoy your personal life outside of work. Check out the recently updated Doctors' Health and Wellbeing Curated Collection for the most relevant resources, readings, courses, videos and tools on this important topic. The Collection is thematically structured, so you can search and filter for the resources that suit your needs. 

Curated Collections are developed based on the contributions and peer review of RACP Fellows and other experts. Don’t forget to claim CPD credits for time spent on online learning resources.

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.

Australian Rheumatology Association (ARA) – The Real Risks of Glucocorticoids, what Australia says! 

When: Tuesday, 23 November 
Time: 8pm to 9pm AEDT
Location: Online

Join Dr Claire Barrett, Dr Rachel Black and Dr Sam Whittle for this webinar on the current use of glucocorticoids in RA in Australia, what the Australian Living Guidelines say and the real risks experienced by patients taking glucocorticoids for rheumatic diseases. Please visit ARA's website for further information.

Register now

Australian Diabetes Society

Date: Monday, 29 November 2021  
Time: 6pm AEDT
Location: Online
Speaker: Associate Professor Tania Markovic

Topic: Update on management of obesity

Join Associate Professor Tania Markovic at this webinar where she will be giving an update on the management of obesity.

Register now

Australian Rheumatology Association (ARA) and the New Zealand Rheumatology Association webinar

Date: Monday, 29 November 2021
Time: 7pm AEDT / 9pm NZDT
Location: Online
Speakers: Dr Sam Whittle, Dr Rebecca Grainger and a TBC speaker

Topic: Vaccinations in people with autoimmune inflammatory rheumatic disease

Join Dr Sam Whittle and Dr Rebecca Grainger for this ARA webinar where strategies for supporting vaccination in patients with autoimmune rheumatic disease at the individual, clinic and community level will be discussed. The presentation will also cover identifying who should be vaccinated, what works to get them vaccinated and practical strategies for the vaccine hesitant. The final speaker (TBC) will present the basis for vaccination recommendations and information about vaccine efficacy and adverse effects.

Register now

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

Career opportunities 

Please see the College website to view all medical positions vacant.

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