Pot-pourri eBulletin 6 May 2022

A message from your President

Greetings all.

This is my last message to you as PCHD President. This term began in May 2020 at the height of the SARS-cov-2 (COVID-19) pandemic following a summer of unprecedented bushfires which burned more than 46 million acres of Australia. Much of the eastern seaboard was in hard lockdown and the merits of wearing masks were still being debated. COVID-19 vaccinations were yet to be introduced into Australia (these would come in February 2021).  Western Australia instituted a hard border for almost all this term, lifting in March 2022 for quarantine-free travel.

As such, my Presidency has been carried out entirely using digital communication. This would not have been possible without the excellent support of the PCHD administrative team, in particular Jessica Blanchard, Kerri Clarke, Engy Henein and more recently Jean Perry.

During this time the College has had to develop and navigate Divisional Clinical Examinations, and continue to review and update the way we provide basic and advanced training curricula to our trainees. We continued to extend our advocacy for sustainable health and action to mitigate climate change. This PCHD Council has been keen to underline our duty of care to children and adolescents to ensure that climate concerns continue to be well articulated and developed across all College activity. The impact of COVID-19 on children was recognised early during this tenure, and the current Kids COVID Catch Up Campaign is a very important initiative as we emerge from this phase of the pandemic.

Other work including facilitating subspecialty recognition of the Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine by APHRA, and increasing the capacity and training opportunities for remote and regional paediatricians remained very high on the agenda and will carry through under the Presidency of Associate Professor Nitin Kapur.

Limitations in the general and specialist paediatrician workforce capacity across Australia emerged as a major concern for the Australian community. This raises issues such as what measures will be developed to address this shortage both in the shorter and longer terms. Furthermore, how will these pressures on health delivery and funding affect the community and paediatricians of the future. These are urgent matters for all of us.

On a more personal note, I reflect on what I have wanted to achieve in relation to advocacy for child health. Well, there is a long list! These include raising attention to the effects of training and sporting injuries in children and adolescents, the pernicious effects of gambling advertising on our adolescents, and expanding the state and national capacity to monitor and evaluate the outcome of health interventions in children.

A special thank you to the outgoing members of the PCHD Council for their support and partnership in progressing the work of the Council. In particular, I thank Associate Professor Nitin Kapur, President-elect, for his counsel and steadfast support during my term. 

Associate Professor Kapur will succeed me as President at the end of the RACP Congress with Dr Niroshini Kennedy as President-elect. 

RACP Congress 12 to 14 May 2022

The RACP Congress 2022 “A Climate for Change” is fast approaching. It will provide us with the opportunity to meet face-to-face and to engage in robust discussion on the issues that are affecting the paediatric community. This includes a comprehensive session on the effect and future of the COVID-19 pandemic in child health, and much more. We hope to discuss how we can constructively navigate what is likely to be a complex paediatric landscape in the future, and the developments and challenges in doing so.

As part of Congress I am hosting the PCHD Dinner on Wednesday, 11 May at Pure South Dining on Melbourne’s scenic Southbank. I encourage you to join me for what will be a wonderful and relaxed social evening.

View the full Congress program and registration details.  I very much look forward to seeing many of you there.

RACP Election  

Provisional results have been announced for the RACP President-elect, Trainee Director Board position and two Chapter positions. Board appointments will go forward to the RACP Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Friday, 13 May 2022, when the election results are declared. View the RACP Election 2022 results.

The Asia Pacific Paediatric Association

The Asia Pacific Paediatric Association (APPA), of which the PCHD is a member society, stands on the advent of the third millennium with a mission to improve child health in this part of the world.

Associate Professor Kapur has been elected to its standing committee as the representative for the Oceania region. Associate Professor Kapur has a keen interest in international strategy and will carry the role through to his Presidency and represent the Division and the College.

It has been a privilege to serve as the 10th PCHD President. I shall be pleased to hand over to Associate Professor Kapur and the new PCHD Council. I look forward to observing advances in their hands and urge all of the membership to reach out with your views to your PCHD Council.

Professor Catherine Choong
PCHD President

RACP Endorsement of the Medical Association for Prevention of War (MAPW) Australia - Health Professional's Statement on the situation in Ukraine

Following consultation with relevant College bodies, the College has formally endorsed the MAPW Australia’s Health Professional Statement on the situation in Ukraine. This statement is intended to bring attention to the medical and humanitarian dimension of the crisis in Ukraine and to unite trusted medical voices in a call for peace.

The content of this statement aligns with a previous MAPW statement urging Australia to join the UN Treaty on the prohibition of nuclear weapons which the College endorsed in 2018, and it also reflects the recent RACP President’s message about Ukraine.

We would also encourage individual members to sign the statement in their individual capacity and to promote it to their networks.

Applications are now open for 2023 RACP Research Awards

Over 50 awards with a total value exceeding $2.5 million are available across the different categories:

The Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation Research Entry Scholarship provides up to $40,000 stipend support for one year for research in any area of internal medicine or paediatrics.

Visit the RACP Foundation webpage to see the eligibility criteria for each award and to access the online application form.

Funding Round Two for the 2022 RACP Educational Development (Study) Grants open on Monday, 20 June 2022. Educational Development Grants provide support to Fellows and Advanced Trainees to undertake further educational training or to develop educational initiatives. Six awards were offered this time round, including RACP Paediatric Small Study Grants for up to $10,000 in value. Visit the RACP Foundation webpage for details.


RACP Congress 2022 is less than a week away.

Hear from expert voices, receive clinical updates, and make the most of catching up with friends and colleagues.

Join us from 12 to 14 May for RACP Congress 2022: A Climate for Change. There are still plenty of opportunities to join us, either in-person or online. Attend for the full two and a half days, or a single day, or purchase a virtual ticket to watch the streamed sessions. All tickets have access to recorded sessions for six months to watch in your own time.

Explore the ticket options and the full Congress program.

Joining us in-person? Have you registered for your workshops?

For those of you joining us at Congress in Melbourne, time is running out to secure your place in the range of workshops.

From Media spokesperson essentials to the Supervisor Professional Development Program (SPDP), these in-demand sessions have limited places so make sure you secure your seat when you register. If you need to secure your seat, email the RACP Congress Events Team.


Kids COVID Catch Up Campaign – sign the petition

Following the successful launch of the Kids COVID Catch Up Campaign in February, we are now asking members to sign the petition calling on our political leaders to commit to a package of policy measures to help children and young people catch up from the setbacks of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Whether it is the loss of education from missed face-to-face teaching, the emotional impact of reduced social connection with their peers, or the lack of access to sport, recreational, and cultural activities, the COVID-19 pandemic has overturned many parts of children’s lives.

The impacts have also not been equal. COVID-19 has amplified existing inequalities across our communities, impacting children from low socio-economic backgrounds, First Nations children, children from culturally diverse backgrounds, children with disability and children experiencing family violence.

Sign the petition

The Campaign has six key asks:

  1. Establish a National COVID-19 taskforce to lead a recovery plan
  2. Appoint and fund a National Chief Paediatrician
  3. Fund and implement the National Children’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy
  4. Increase funding for school students with additional needs, such as disability or learning difficulties
  5. Implement universal access to early education programs for all three-year-old children
  6. Restrict marketing of unhealthy diets to children and young people

By signing the petition you will strengthen our voice and help us send a message to our leaders: it is time to focus on our kids and help put their futures back on track to achieve their potential.

Join the College Curriculum Advisory Group

The Curriculum Advisory Group, which oversees the Curricula Renewal project, is seeking a new member. Expressions of Interest (EOIs) are welcome from Fellows and trainees, with a deadline of Friday, 20 May 2022.

Submit an EOI

Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health: April 2022 edition

JPCHThe Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health publishes original research articles of scientific excellence in paediatrics and child health. The April 2022 edition is now live and available to view online.

Articles in this edition include:

  • Disordered eating in youth with T1D.

  • Assessing paediatric low back pain.

  • Exclusive enteral nutrition in children.

  • Factors associated with children.

  • Bicycle injuries in COVID.

  • Conflict as a place of possibility.

Read the journal

New Digital Health CPD Primer

Digital healthThe new Primer of CPD Activities in Digital Health has been developed by the RACP’s Digital Health Advisory Group to help you earn CPD credits in the fields of digital health and clinical informatics. The Primer provides a range of digital health activities across the three CPD categories:

  • Educational activities
  • Reviewing performance
  • Measuring outcomes.

Browse the primer for examples of how to meet your CPD requirements in digital health.

Specialist Training Program applications - now open

Applications for new Specialist Training Program (STP) positions are now open and will be available until Friday, 13 May 2022. The Specialist Training Program supports training positions in regional, rural and remote areas, and in private facilities. This helps to improve the skills and distribution of the specialist workforce by giving participants experience of a broader range of healthcare settings. Please visit the Department of Health website for more information.

All queries regarding the new STP position process should be directed to postgraduate.training@health.gov.au.

Don’t forget to download the RACP Online Community (ROC) app

Did you know that RACP members can access the ROC via an app?  The easy-to-use mobile app will help you get the most out of your online community and connect you with other members. The app can be used to initiate discussions, find other members, read the latest posts, and share your expertise. Download the ROC app from the App Store or Google Play, or login via MyRACP.

Pomegranate Health Podcast: Healthcare in a Volatile Climate


Ep80: Healthcare in a Volatile Climate

The globe has already warmed by more than one degree Celsius over pre-industrial levels, and is on track to exceed two degrees by the end of the century.

It doesn’t sound like a lot, but this will have profound effects on human health — with Australia being particularly vulnerable. If this were to happen, Australia’s biggest cities will become furnaces in summer with of heat-related mortality rates more than doubling. The rising temperatures will also increase frequency of the climate oscillations that delivered us record-breaking temperatures and bushfires in 2019 to 2020, followed by historic rains and floods last summer.

In this podcast we discuss the effects of this increasingly volatile climate on the health of Australians, from infectious disease to respiratory and even mental health. Professor Lynne Madden explains how the health system can become more resilient to these demands and what measures the RACP is asking the Federal Government to commit to in preparation for this.

Find out more about the "Health Climate Future" campaign.


  • Professor Lynne Madden FAFPHM (University of Notre Dame)

Subscribe to email alerts or search for ‘Pomegranate Health’ in Apple PodcastsSpotifyCastbox, or any podcasting app. RACP Fellows can claim CPD credits for listening and learning via MyCPD. For a transcript and further references please visit our webpage

Paxlovid® for the treatment of COVID-19

Paxlovid® will be listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme(PBS) from Sunday, 1 May 2022, as a treatment for COVID-19.

The Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee has advised that this medicine should be listed on the PBS for adults who have mild to moderate COVID-19 confirmed by a PCR or medically verified RAT and who can start treatment within five days of symptom onset, can be prescribed PBS-subsidised Paxlovid® by their doctor or nurse practitioner if:

  • they are 65 years of age or older, with two other risk factors for severe disease (as increasing age is a risk factor, patients who are 75 years of age of older only need to have one other risk factor); or they identify as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander origin, and are 50 years of age or older with two other risk factors for severe disease, or
  • they are moderately to severely immunocompromised.

Paxlovid® is not recommended for use in pregnant or breastfeeding women and in women of childbearing potential not using contraception. TGA product information on Paxlovid® is available here.

To prioritise Paxlovid® for patients at highest risk of developing severe COVID-19, prescribers are requested to prescribe Paxlovid® only in accordance with the PBS eligibility criteria; and prescribers and dispensers are strongly discouraged from providing it via private prescription.

For more information please read the PBS factsheet available here.

Handbook of Clinical Pancreatology Second Edition

The Second Edition of the Handbook of Clinical Pancreatology, an educational resource developed under the auspices of GESA, is now available. The Handbook has been developed as an up to date, succinct guide rather than a definitive textbook. It is a resource medical practitioners can refer to in the lecture hall, hospital ward or consulting room.

Three new chapters have been added to complete the scope of the Handbook: Paediatric Clinical Pancreatology, Cystic Fibrosis and the Pancreas and Diabetes of the Exocrine Pancreas. Each chapter is co-authored by an Australian and international expert. Further information is available on the GESA Clinical resources page.

Let’s celebrate Mum… with Member Advantage

Member advantagesThis May, we bring you a series of special offers to reward that special person in your life – Mum. With so many online options to choose from, Mother’s Day shopping has never been easier.

Here are some of the great deals on offer:

Save on electronics with JB HiFi
Does Mum need a new phone? Or a pair of in-ear headphones to listen to her favourite tunes? With your exclusive access to the JB Hi-Fi Corporate Benefits program, you can save big on tech and electronics at Australia’s largest retailer of consumer electronics.

Gourmet food and wine to delight
Reward Mum with delicious gourmet food, paired with exclusive wines from Australia, Aotearoa New Zealand and France. Save up to 10% on Mother’s Day gift hampers and choose from the extensive range at StellaRio or build your own to suit Mum’s taste.

Give Mum the perfect eGift
Not yet sure what to get Mum? Spa treatments, shopping experiences, so many choices! Discounted eGift Cards provide you with great savings and are the perfect gift for Mum.

Log in today to start shopping or call 1300 853 352 for more information.

*Terms and conditions apply. 

Australian member access    Aotearoa New Zealand member access

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 update your address details online? Simply log into MyRACP and go to 'Edit my details'.

Career opportunities  

View all career opportunities on the RACP website.

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