The President's Message - 22 May 2015

22 May, 2015

President's Message - 22 May 2015


Congress 2015 Breaking Boundaries Creating Connections is just a few days away and is sure to be an informative and inspiring event.

I am looking forward to meeting our trainees and presenting with my colleague, immediate past-President of the American College of Physicians, Dr David Fleming, on the process of getting published at Trainees' Day.

A key aspect of Congress is of course Ceremony where we officially welcome our new Fellows. This year at Ceremony we are delighted that oncologist and RACP Fellow Dr Ranjana Srivastava will be delivering the Arthur E Mills Oration. In her talk, Dr Srivastava will reflect on the privilege and responsibility of being a physician and trace her own professional journey.

Thank you to members who have submitted questions in advance of the Annual General Meeting (AGM), being held during Congress on Monday, 26 May. Responses to these questions as well as responses to those asked at the Meeting will be posted on the College's website. I encourage those attending Congress to join the AGM from 12.45pm to 2.00pm.

Another important workshop on the program is the Governance Reform breakfast to be held on Tuesday, 26 May. At this session, delegates will discuss the Board's plan to reinvigorate the College to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing environment for physicians.

To conclude the social program, on the evening of Tuesday, 27 May the Cairns Cruise Terminal will host the Gala Dinner where I look forward to an evening of entertainment and presentations to some of our deserving RACP Foundation award recipients.

Registrations for Congress 2015 Breaking Boundaries Creating Connections close today.

Extraordinary General Meeting

The College has received a request from over 100 members to hold an Extraordinary General Meeting to consider specific issues. Meeting notices will be sent to members in the normal manner within the next week.

Laureate Professor Nicholas Talley
President, RACP


With climate change increasingly recognised as "the biggest global health threat of the 21st century"1, climate change and health has been identified as a priority for the College's Policy & Advocacy work in 2015.

The College is calling for Expressions of Interest from Fellows and trainees with expertise on the health impacts of climate change to join a new Climate Change and Health Working Party. This Working Party will lead the development of positions and policies that will support the College's ability to contribute to relevant policy discussions, recognising that the College's policy legitimacy rests on comment being consistent with physicians' professional expertise. It will also lead the Health impacts of climate change - a global advocacy initiative, which will involve developing an international consensus statement on the need for action on climate change to combat health impacts.

Click on the following links to access the Expression of Interest Application Form and Terms of Reference for the Working Party.

If you have any further questions regarding the establishment of the Working Party, please contact Angela Hua, Policy Officer on



The Fellowship Committee chaired by Board Member and New Zealand President, Associate Professor Mark Lane, was established by the Board to oversee the development of a suite of member services, and provide advice and recommendations on improving communication with Fellows and on specific Fellow initiatives such as the annual RACP Congress.

The Fellowship Committee is composed of nominees from each of the Divisions and Faculties, the New Zealand Committee and the College Trainees' Committee as well as the Congress Lead Fellow and nominees from Speciality Societies and the wider community.

Key priorities and activities for 2015

The priorities of the Fellowship Committee are:

1. Identify and understand the needs and wants of members through the development, implementation and assessment of a series of research tools to understand perceptions and requirements.
2. Develop and implement key initiatives that increase the value and relevance of membership including:

a. exploration and creation of opportunities for developing leadership opportunities for members; 

b. development of a suite of tools to promote personal health and wellbeing of Members including preventative activities and responses;

c. development and recommendation of a strategy for international and Asia/Pacific engagement, determining deliverables and outlining key policy issues and implications;

d. close liaison with other Board Committees to align and influence on behalf of Members as required, to ensure that members needs are met, including but not limited to areas of member engagement and the health and wellbeing of doctors;

e. liaison with other Colleges and speciality societies to build relevant relationships in order to gain an understanding of member services provided; and

f. reviewing and influencing the Congress program to ensure feedback is incorporated and a breadth of program explored to meet member needs.


3. Communicate effectively with Members to increase awareness and appreciation of the value and relevance of membership through targeted quality member communication in alignment with the RACP Communication Strategy.

Key achievements

The Fellowship Committee has progressed a number of activities including:

1. Review of the final report from the Fellows in Difficulty Working Party and recommendation of next steps to the Board including:

a. discussions with relevant Colleges and other key stakeholders (potentially via the Committee of Presidents of Medical Colleges (Australia) and the Council of Medical Colleges (New Zealand) to determine opportunities for partnerships and/or coordinated advocacy in relation to health of doctors, particularly in New Zealand where there are limited suitable support services for doctors;

b. discussions with the colleges of general practitioners in both New Zealand & Australia to determine the opportunities for partnerships, information sharing and support in ‘doctors for doctors' training; and

c. training modules to promote appropriate wellbeing and health assessment incorporated into suitable events/programs such as Trainee Orientations, Supporting Physicians' Professionalism and Performance (SPPP), Trainees' Day, and RACP Congress, and other information made readily available to members.

2. Appointment of Congress Lead Fellow for 2016 to 2017 and development of a longer term strategy for Congress to meet members' needs and thereby increase interest and attendance numbers.
3. Improvements to the criteria of College Awards to provide further clarity and increase their prestige including:

a. The John Sands College Medal

b. RACP Medal for Clinical Services in Rural and Remote Areas

c. RACP Mentor of the Year Award

d. RACP Trainee of the Year Award

4. Creation of the International Strategy Working Group and Pacific Working Group to determine the College's strategy for supporting the work of Fellows and trainees in and beyond the Asia/Pacific region and opportunities for international development and collaboration.
5. Reinvigoration of the College Roll through a change in focus from the commemoration of deceased Fellows to a celebration of the achievements of Fellows during their careers.
6. Considering recommendations from the Cultural Assets Working Party on the use of College heritage assets to promote the upcoming 80th anniversary.

The College Fellowship Committee is always interested in hearing the views of members. Please send your enquiries to


Fellow and Trainee Members are encouraged to register for a special workshop to discuss College Reform.

The workshop, titled ‘Medicis & temporum - Honouring Our Past and Embracing the Future' will outline the Board's plan to reinvigorate the College to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing environment for physicians.

The presentation will look at the history of the College and how it has evolved over the past 85 years to become one of the world's preeminent medical institutions. Workshop delegates will also review plans to place the needs of members at the centre of the College's work, including the creation of a new Council of specialties to advise a more focused, streamlined Board.

I welcome your participation at this free workshop on Tuesday, 26 May 2015 from 7.00am to 8.30am.

Please register online to attend. 


EOI: Continuing Professional Development Committee Fellow and Advanced Trainee positions, clos​ed

Expressions of Interest are sought for two positions on the Continuing Professional Development Committee (CPDC):

The CPDC is responsible for working with RACP management to ensure the College's CPD program meets the needs of the Fellowship. The primary responsibilities of the Committee include reviewing and approving minor changes to the College's CPD program, recommending major changes to the College Education Committee, monitoring issues arising from CPD participation and facilitating peer review of learning resources.

The Advanced Trainee representative is a new position created to improve CPD support during admission to Fellowship and consider trainee access to the CPD program.

The CPDC is supported by the CPD Unit within the Office of the Dean.

Expressions of interest are requested by Friday, 22 May 2015. For more information, please contact the CPD Unit at

EOI: Medsafe Medicines Assessment Advisory Committee (MAAC), ​now closed

The MAAC provides advice to the Minister of Health on the benefits and risks of new medicines. The advice provided by the MAAC is an important component of the regulatory framework for safeguarding public health in New Zealand.

Applications are being sought from candidates with substantial clinical experience and national credibility in:

  • general practice 
  • specialist fields (for example cardiology, dermatology, geriatrics, neurology, psychiatry and women's health)
Candidates applying for appointment should also be familiar with the purpose and scope of the Medicines Act 1981.

Appointments to the MAAC are made by the Minister of Health for a term of three years.

  • Further information about the MAAC is available from the Medsafe website. To be considered for appointment to the MAAC, application forms can be accessed through the above link, please submit your application form, together with your current curriculum vitae, by Friday, 29 May 2015 to: 

MAAC Secretary 
PO Box 5013 

Or email

EOI: Grants Advisory Committee,  now close​d

Expressions of Interest are invited from Fellows to become members of the Grants Advisory Committee (GAC).

The Grants Advisory Committee is a skills based committee established to:

  • review applications for the RACP Foundation Awards and determine recipients;
  • review applications for the RACP Foundation Awards and determine recipients;
  • consider and review Awards to fulfil strategic objectives across the College;
  • determine annually, the number and value of awards to be offered in the next year to support medical research and educational initiatives; and
  • work with other appropriate College bodies to support the purposes of the College Research Committee and the Grants Advisory Committee.

Successful candidates must be available to meet on Monday, 26 and Tuesday, 27 October 2015 for the purpose of determining recipients of Awards for 2016.

The GAC may meet twice a year face-to-face and via tele/videoconference as required.

For a copy of the Grants Advisory Committee By-Laws and an EOI application form please contact

Submissions must be received by COB Monday, 1 June 2015.

EOI: Australia's National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Working Party, ​now closed

Applications are invited from Fellows and trainees of the College who are interested in becoming a member of the College's National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Working Party.

Australia's NDIS is a new way of providing community links and individualised support for people with permanent and significant disability, their families and carers. Under the NDIS, people with a disability will have greater control over government funded disability support services. Individuals will exercise choice and control over a needs-based funding envelope to purchase supports that will most effectively meet their needs.

The RACP has been approached to contribute physician's perspective and expertise at various stages of the NDIS roll-out, and is establishing a Working Party to lead this work.

Fellows who are interested in joining the NDIS Working Party are invited to complete the attached Expression of Interest form by COB Friday, 19 June 2015. The NDIS Working Party Terms of Reference are also attached for your information.

Please email your completed EOI form and CV to, or for further information please contact Alexander Lynch at



I am pleased to announce on behalf of the RACP Foundation that awards in the following Award categories are now being offered to Fellow and Trainee Members.

Research Development Scholarships providing funding for smaller projects.

Research Entry Scholarships to assist Fellows and trainees at the start of their research career and who are enrolled in a Masters, PhD or higher research degree.

Research Establishment Fellowships available to Fellows and trainees who wish to establish themselves in a research career.

Career Development Fellowships for Fellows who are established researchers.

Travel Grants to support short periods of research or study.

There are multiple awards available in each category.

Visit the RACP Foundation webpage for full details including:

  • Closing dates
  • Eligibility
  • New online application system
  • Award Terms and Conditions

For any queries contact

Close overlay