Pot-pourri eBulletin 28 June 2019

President's Message

Congratulations to those recognised in the 2019 Queen’s Birthday Honours. This year, 11 paediatricians were honoured for their outstanding work within the community and for medicine. A full list of the Fellows recognised, can be viewed on our website.

In May we had some exciting news with the former Prime Minister and Beyond Blue Chair, the Hon Julia Gillard AC, officially launching the Centre of Research Excellence in Childhood Adversity and Mental Health. This is a five-year research program that aims to “create a sustainable service approach, co-designed with end-users, to improve children’s mental health by early detection and response to family adversity”. Professor Harriet Hiscock and Professor Sharon Goldfeld have played an integral role and I congratulate them both for this great initiative. Professor Hiscock will be sharing further details of the Centre in the RACP Chapter Chat newsletter in July but in the meantime you can read more about the Centre.

I usually focus on completed issues, but many of you deal with live issues, which are often the focus of parents’ concerns because of media interest. PCHD has recently been involved in the issue of tongue tie following media focus on a baby with severe haemorrhage as a complication of phrenotomy, and the role of chiropractic in babies and children. PCHD is now engaged in processes in relation to both these issues, which will hopefully have long-term impacts on best practice. I’ll report on outcomes in due course.

The PCHD Council will hold its annual meeting with specialty societies in July. This is a great opportunity for members to engage with their specialty societies, share ideas and focus on opportunities for any positive change. The specialty societies play an important role and I look forward to seeing how we may strengthen these relationships and collaborate on future projects.

I would like to remind members that the RACP is establishing a physician workforce profile and is calling on Fellows to enter their practice activity through a new feature in MyRACP. We understand many Fellows complete workforce information for other organisations, but these are often fragmented and designed around a specific question. It is essential that we have quality data from members to help inform decision-makers and assist our own future planning. I urge you all to complete this brief questionnaire; further details can be found on the College website.

For those who missed the opportunity or want to re-live it, selected Congress presentations are now on the website. The Congress 2020 video has also been released and I look forward to seeing the program develop over the coming months.

Professor Paul Colditz
President, Paediatrics & Child Health Division

Nominations now open for the RACP Trainee Board Director

A casual vacancy is available for the position of RACP Trainee Board Director.

The successful candidate for the Trainee Director position is appointed by the Board and will fill the position until the conclusion of the College’s Annual General Meeting in May 2020.

Visit the website for eligibility criteria and nomination details.

Nominations close on Monday, 8 July.

All eligible trainees are encouraged to nominate.

Come and meet your College Board on 11 July at Westmead Hospital

You are invited to join RACP President Associate Professor Mark Lane and your RACP Board at an informal meeting where you will have the opportunity to engage in conversation and network with other Fellows and trainees.

When: Thursday, 11 July 2019 from 6.15pm to 7.15pm with refreshments being served from 5.30pm

Where: The Green Room, Level 1 next to the Westmead Education and Conference Centre at Westmead Hospital, Corner Hawkesbury Road and Darcy Road Westmead NSW 2145

Spaces are limited, so please RSVP by close of business on Thursday, 4 July 2019 to events@racp.edu.au.

This is an open invitation for RACP trainees and Fellows, so please feel free to share this within your network. A summary of previous Conversations with the Board events can be found through the following links:

Regrettably the College is unable to provide support for travel and accommodation for this event.

Recognising outstanding contributions and achievements

"hominum servire saluti” – to serve the health of our people

The annual awards for outstanding contributions made by members of the College in their respective fields are of special importance. Our College and the broader medical community benefit in many different ways and in recognition of this, the criteria for The John Sands Medal and The College Medal have been changed to clearly define these differences.

Nominations are now open for:

  • The John Sands Medal recognises a Fellow who makes a significant contribution to the welfare of the RACP and its members.
  • The College Medal recognises a Fellow who makes a significant contribution to medical specialist practice and improving the health of people.
  • Howard Williams Medal recognises a Fellow has made an outstanding contribution to improving the health of children and young people in Australia or New Zealand.

Applications for this year’s Trainee Research Awards will open on 1 July 2019. The Trainee Research Awards provide a wonderful opportunity for trainees to do an oral presentation of their research at a regional event and if selected, to also present at the 2020 RACP Congress in Melbourne in May.

For further details on our medals and prizes, please visit the Foundation webpage.

Research awards applications closing soon

If you are seeking support to undertake research, don't miss out on the different awards and grants offered through the RACP Foundation. Applications are closing soon for the following categories:

Full details for these and other opportunities are available on the Foundation webpage.

International Society for Social Paediatrics and Child Health (ISSOP) e-bulletin

Sign-up for the latest ISSOP e-bulletin. ISSOP promotes knowledge of social paediatrics, to stimulate research in this field, to disseminate such knowledge at meetings and to work together with national and international agencies.

New Pomegranate Health Podcasts

Ep46: The First 1,000 Days
This episode was recorded at RACP Congress 2019 in Auckland. The three speakers dealt with the profound influence that the early years of life have on lifelong health, wellbeing, behaviour and socioeconomic outcomes.

Professor Richie Poulton CNZM FRSNZ outlined the influential Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study, which has followed over 1,037 participants since 1972. All sorts of measures have been taken throughout the participants’ lives, but Professor Poulton showed the incredible predictive power of one behavioural trait in particular: self-control.

Paediatrician Dr Johan Morreau FRACP revealed how associations between childhood deprivation and behavioural outcomes might be explained by developmental neuroscience, and finally, public health physician Professor Susan Morton FAFPHM showed evidence from the Growing Up in New Zealand Study which reveals the importance of social factors in protecting against poor outcomes.

Together, these speakers demonstrated that the consequences of childhood disadvantage are borne not just by individuals and families but by all of society. The lectures were framed by the launch of the RACP early childhood position statement titled “The Importance of the Early Years” and another released last year on “Inequities in Child Health”.

Ep47: Complex Adolescent Transitions
Everyone knows that adolescence is a turbulent time. Teens are faced not just with changes to their bodies, but to their moods and thought patterns as well. They might also be saying goodbye to familiar carers in the paediatric department, and in Episode 11 we heard how important it is to ensure a smooth transition to adult services, which tend to be more anonymous.

This is especially true for young people with special needs such as diabetes, transplant management or intellectual disability, though they are the least likely to received dedicated transition support. The three speakers in this podcast explain that improving this transition process doesn’t require going way above and beyond regular practice, it just needs a little more coordination.

Recorded at the RACP Congress 2019. First, Dr Fran Mouat outlined Starship’s transition program for young patients with diabetes, and some of the data showing its impact on glycaemic control after they’ve left paediatric care.

Dr Rachael Harry leads a transition program for adolescents who’ve undergone transplants early in life. With a moving case study, she described how all the medical care in the world needs to fit in with the lifestyle that every young adult aspires to.

Finally, Dr Colette Muir, described what this period is like for adolescents with developmental disabilities. Intellectual disability is associated with a lower quality of care throughout the lifespan, often because of “diagnostic overshadowing”—the phenomenon by which the complaints of such patients get attributed to the disability itself, rather than being investigated thoroughly in their own right.

The RACP is a signatory to an international consensus statement called Equally Well, and has also published a position paper about transition of young people with chronic disability needs.

Consider your Continuing Professional Development opportunities

The RACP provides an accredited CPD program called ‘MyCPD’ to assist Fellows in meeting your mandated CPD requirements, which are set by the Medical Board of Australia and the Medical Council of New Zealand. The College does not formally accredit CPD activities; instead, the RACP MyCPD program offers a self-directed and self-reporting tool enabling participants to record and report on CPD activities that you judge relevant to the scope of your practice.

This means that you may claim any learning opportunity you assess as suitable to meet your CPD requirements. The RACP website offers help to Create a Professional Development Plan, so that compiling your CPD requirements isn’t a stressful last-minute rush.

Members are reminded that work you do as a result of your contribution to your specialty society (for example, the Australian Paediatric Surveillance Unit) may be eligible to claim as CPD. This would be measured in hours and would depend on the nature of work, and could, be eligible to claim in Categories 1, 2 or 3 of the MyCPD framework.

Don’t leave your CPD requirements until the last minute. For more information on MyCPD you can access MyCPD from the Quick Links on the RACP homepage, consult the online help desk site, or contact the MyCPD team by email.

Clinical documents in My Health Record explained

The Australian Digital Health Agency will be holding a national webinar for all healthcare providers, 'Clinical documents in My Health Record explained'.

This webinar will provide insights into the types of provider clinical documents that can be found in an individual’s My Health Record. It highlights the origins and accessibility to different document types as well as clarifying common ambiguities. Areas covered include:

  • Shared Health Summaries vs Event Summaries
  • Prescription and Dispense Records vs Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) medicines
  • Medicines Information View- Pharmaceutical Shared Medicines List (PSML)
  • Pathology and Diagnostic Imaging
  • Specialist Letters
  • eReferrals
  • Medicare Documents
  • Advanced Care Plan and Advanced Care Document Custodian

Webinar Details

  • Date & Time: Thursday, 18 July 2019 at 1pm - 2pm (AEST)
  • Join via your computer – register beforehand. Registrations close 24 hours prior to the event
  • A copy of the presentation will be made available following the event to individuals who have registered to attend the webinar.

Benzathine penicillin approved for inclusion in Doctors Bag

In July 2018 the College sent a letter to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee’s (PBAC) review of the ‘Doctors Bag’ recommending the addition of syphilis treatment medication benzathine penicillin to enable General Practitioners and other primary care services, including Aboriginal health services, to supply and stock benzathine for syphilis treatment. 

In February 2019 the PBAC Secretariat requested further information to support the 2018 submission. A submission was developed by the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) and the RACP’s Sexual Health in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities Expert Reference Group (ERG) recommending including benzathine penicillin on the pharmaceutical benefits scheme prescriber bag list (‘Doctors bag’).

The Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee accepted the recommendation, and this is an important step in increasing syphilis treatment availability to address the syphilis epidemic in Queensland, Northern Territory, Western Australia and South Australia.

Benzathine penicillin in the Doctors Bag will be specifically useful for:

  • Non-remote Aboriginal medical service, high caseload urban general practitioners to stock benzathine.
  • Any General Practitioners calling a sexual health clinic for advice can be advised that they can order the treatment in for free before the patient arrives to reduce delays to treatment initiation and loss to follow-up.

College Policy & Advocacy Council Communique and Report

At the College Policy & Advocacy Council meeting held in May, a bi-annual report of the College’s policy and advocacy activity was released. The meeting communique is available on the College website.

The report contains detailed updates on policy priorities, which includes both CPAC led items and Divisions, Faculties, Chapters and Regional activity.

New BT email

The Basic Training unit have a new email address. Please make sure you update your email contact to BasicTraining@racp.edu.au.

Emails sent to PREP_BT@racp.edu.au are currently being redirected to the new address. However, this email will soon be switched off.

Please ensure you send all further emails to the new address as any vital information to your training may not be received at the old address.

RACP Congress 2019 session recordings

Presentation videos of selected sessions from RACP Congress 2019 are now available. You are also able to view all presentation slides. Selected sessions and slides have only been released where approval has been given by the presenters.

We are now planning for RACP Congress 2020, view the RACP Congress 2020 video. We look forward to seeing you in Melbourne, Monday, 4 May to Wednesday, 6 May 2020.

Apply to be a Member of the College Research Committee

Expressions of interest are open for a Fellow to join the College Research Committee.

To apply, submit an expression of interest form and your CV (maximum 2 pages) to research@racp.edu.au

Include a brief statement outlining your interest in the role and how your knowledge and experience will contribute to the Committee's objectives.

Freemasons Postgraduate Fellowships in Paediatrics and Child Health for 2019

The fellowships or scholarships support research training and are open to university graduates who intend to pursue work in paediatrics or child health within New Zealand long-term. The Fellowships include full-time salary for one year with provision for a further year.

Applications close on Friday, 19 July 2019 to be sent to the Lead Administrator, Department of Women’s & Children’s Health, Dunedin School of Medicine, PO Box 56, Dunedin or email wch.admin@otago.ac.nz.

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Pot-Pourri submissions welcome

To submit an article for publishing in Pot-pourri, please email paed@racp.edu.au. The article should be no more than 350 words. If you would like to submit an image with your article, it would be assumed that you have received appropriate permission to use the photo and it needs to be of high resolution, above 300 dpi. Please note that articles may need to be edited by the RACP Communications Team.

Update your details with the College

Did you know that you can now update your address details online?
Simply Login to MyRACP and go to 'Edit my details'.

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