The President's Message – 14 June 2019

Congratulations to the 39 Fellows who received the highest levels of community recognition across Australia and New Zealand in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.

Two members received the highest Australian civilian honour of Companion of the Order of Australia this year.

Professor David James Burke AO has been recognised for his service to neurophysiology, to innovative treatments for spinal cord and brain trauma injuries, and to professional medical organisations.

Honorary Fellow Professor Ruth Frances Bishop AO was honoured for her work in medical research and global child health through the development of improved vaccines for paediatric gastroenteritis.

In New Zealand Dr Susan Nicola Bagshaw CNZM, of Christchurch was honoured with the Dame Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit. A member of FAChSHM, Dr Bagshaw has been recognised for her services to youth health.

It gives me great joy to see so many of our colleagues honoured this year and I encourage you to view the full list of those recognised on the College website.

Library re-opening and librarian recruitment

After decades of gradual moisture exposure, the College’s History of Medicine Library Collection was closed at the end of 2017 and the entire collection of books and artefacts sent offsite for assessment and remediation.

I can now announce that most of the collection has been returned and we are currently recruiting a new Librarian.

Once we have a new custodian for the collection we will be able to open the library to members and re-establish the Library and Heritage Committee.

The College has an impressive collection of books and items dating back hundreds of years so it’s imperative that we preserve these historical artefacts.

I look forward to being able to announce the opening of the library and we will keep you updated with more details and opportunities as they come to hand.

Kind regards,

Associate Professor Mark Lane
RACP President


Queen’s Birthday Honours 2019

Congratulations to the RACP Fellows recognised in the 2019 Queen's Birthday Honours.

These awards highlight the outstanding work RACP members do and the importance of that work in local, national and international communities.

To view the list of RACP Fellows who have been recognised, please visit the Queen's Birthday Honours webpage.

An important change to RACP Foundation medals

"hominum servire saluti"  - to serve the health of our people

Our College and the broader medical community benefit from our members in many different ways. To recognise this, the criteria for the John Sands and College medals has been changed to clearly define their distinct differences.

Nominations are now open for:

  • The John Sands Medal recognising a Fellow who makes a significant contribution to the welfare of the RACP and its members.
  • The College Medal recognising a Fellow who makes a significant contribution to medical specialist practice and improving the health of people.

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

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. 

Why Doctors Hate Their Computers

The Physician Health and Wellbeing Reference Group (PHWRG) wants to share the article ‘why doctors hate their computers’ with all members.

Electronic record keeping systems have been identified as a source of distress and a workplace risk that is having a negative effect on doctors health and wellbeing. This can often be compounded by the lack of communication between different systems in different sites and/or specialities.

The article is written by American surgeon and public-health researcher Atul Gawande and shares many of his own personal experiences and frustrations. While it is based around American processes, the PHWRG feel the themes of burnout, balancing interactions with patients and technology as well as administrative vs operational functions, are ones that Australian Physicians can identify with.

If you are experiencing stress or burnout, the RACP Support Program offers free and confidential counselling 24 hours a day, 7 days a week via Converge. 

Time is running out to apply for Research Awards

Don't miss your opportunity to apply for Research Awards worth up to $100,000 available for 2020 funding offered through the RACP Foundation.

Applications close soon for the following awards and grants:

Full details for these opportunities are available on the RACP Foundation website. Please email us for more information.

New Pomegranate podcasts

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

Complex Adolescent Transitions
It's no secret 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.

RACP Fellows can claim CPD credits via MyCPD for listening and using resources related to these episodes. Subscribe to Pomegranate Health through iTunes, Spotify or any Android podcasting app.

June edition of the Internal Medicine Journal

The Editor’s Choice for the month is a review by Emma Leitinger, Lisa Hui and Andrew Grigg - Is there a role for proton pump inhibitor prophylaxis in haematology patients?

  • Proton pump inhibitors in haematology patients
  • Increased mortality in males from ventricular tachyarrhythmias
  • Death and assisted dying: capacity assessments
  • Inflammatory bowel disease or Traveller’s diarrhoea?

Read now

June edition of the Journal of Paediatrics and Child Heath

The Journal of Paediatrics and Child Heath June 2019 edition is out now. It includes an interesting article on the relationship between urinary incontinence and childhood obesity.

  • Other topics this month include:
  • Climate change: Whose responsibility?
  • Delivering bad news
  • Palpitations and smartphones
  • Nebulised surfactant

    Read now

Competitive exchange rates on international money transfers

If you are looking to transfer money overseas, OFX can help you save money with bank beating exchange rates and $0 OFX transfer fees* for RACP Members.

OFX is an ASX listed company, providing fast and secure international money transfers for private clients and business customers, with 24/7 support. Since launching over 20 years ago, OFX have helped more than 1 million customers worldwide and securely transferred over AU$100bn.

RACP Members will enjoy:

  • $0 OFX transaction fees on ALL transfers over AUD $250*
  • Competitive exchange rates
  • Dedicated Account Manager

To access this offer and learn more please go to your RACP Member Advantage website.

*Minimum transfer AUD$250. Third party fees may apply. OzForex Limited trading as “OFX”. ABN 65 092 375 703 | AFSL 226 484. Read our PDS and FSG at

MyCPD Champion: Dr Jessamine Liu


Dr Jessamine Liu_CPD_TW 506x253

Medical Board of Australia (MBA) changes to how Fellows undertake Continuing Professional Development (CPD)come into effect over the next few years. The RACP is preparing Fellows for these changes by updating its MyCPD Framework from 2019, to reflect the direction the MBA is heading with its changes.

As the new MyCPD Framework comes into effect, various Fellows incorporating the changes into their practice and lifestyles speak to us about their approaches to CPD. To hear a different perspective from an Advanced Trainee, we spoke to Dr Jessamine Liu. She answered our CPD questions below.

Why is CPD important to you?
As a physician in training, I strive to be the best physician I can be. This includes actively ensuring my medical knowledge is up-to-date and developing my clinical skills through CPD. CPD helps me to provide better care for my patients and gives me greater professional satisfaction.

How have you benefited from undertaking CPD activities?
CPD helps me to stay up-to-date with new clinical development and guideline changes so I can be at the forefront of evidence-based medicine.

It also encourages me to seek opportunities to develop a range of skills including communication skills, teaching skills and cultural competency.

In this day and age, patients have access to a vast amount of medical information on the internet. Having up-to-date medical expertise ensures I can provide evidence-based care and facilitates more trusting relationships with my patients.

What are some of the CPD activities you choose to do and why?
Physicians are leaders and role models. Our expertise is sought by colleagues and patients alike.

The commitment to CPD helps to foster a positive culture of ongoing pursuit of medical excellence. It promotes lifelong learning and education among junior colleagues, while helping us provide the best patient care possible.

Why is reviewing performance and measuring outcomes important?
Outcomes are not the sole measurement of performance; however they provide a safety net to ensure the basic patient care standards are met. Reviewing performance helps us to identify areas of concern early, allows for self-evaluation, and gives opportunity for feedback and improvement. Ultimately it promotes better patient care.

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