AMA in the News
Your AMA has been active on policy and in the media on a range of issues crucial to making our health system better. Below is a snapshot of recent media coverage.
Aussies to help in Ebola hotspot, Courier Mail, 5 November 2014
The Federal Government is set to back down on its refusal to send medical works to west Africa, after striking a deal with the UK to treat Australians who become infected with the virus. AMA President A/Professor Brian Owler welcomed the deal and said he knew of doctors who were ready to go.
Australians cleared to join Ebola fight, Sydney Morning Herald, 5 November 2014
The Abbott government will help Australian volunteers to travel to one of the Ebola hotspots in Africa to help control the epidemic. The AMA has said that many doctors are willing to assist.
Hunt for helpers to fight Ebola, The Australian, 6 November 2014
Tony Abbott announced the government would hire Canberra-based Aspen Medical Centre to provide 240 staff for a 100-bed medical facility being built by the British government in Sierra Leone. AMA President A/Professor Brian Owler welcomed the announcement but questioned why AUSMAT teams were not being used.
Who’ll budge it?, The Saturday Paper, 8 November 2014
Tony Abbott urged scientists to make their case for the $20 billion Medical Research Future Fund, to be financed in part by the Medicare co-payment. AMA President A/Professor Brian Owler said the debate on the co-payment should be separated from the issue of funding research.
Results should go to the patient, The Sunday Age, 9 November 2014
Patients will be able to access their test results via electronic health records after seven days, giving doctors time to manage the communication of results to their patients. The AMA signed off on the seven-day delay.
Neurosurgeon defended, The Canberra Times, 10 November 2014
The Canberra Times published a letter questioning AMA President A/Professor Brian Owler’s credentials in his commitment to the treatment of and research into brain cancer. AMA Secretary General Ms Anne Trimmer said A/Professor Owler does not deserve to have his professionalism and commitment questioned.
Medical degree fees may preclude some students, Australian Financial Review, 13 November 2014
The cost of a medical degree will rise to about $250,000 if university fees are deregulated, AMA President A/Professor Brian Owler has warned. A/Professor Owler said the prospect of larger debts would deter students from rural, poor and Indigenous backgrounds from pursuing a medical career.
$7 GP fee ‘by stealth’, The Herald Sun, 13 November 2014
Fears the $7 GP fee flagged in this year’s Budget could be implemented without parliamentary approval have been heightened. AMA President A/Professor Brian Owler questioned the legitimacy of any move by the Federal Government to work around Parliament to introduce its co-payment plan.
Push to sell Pill without a script, Courier Mail, 19 November 2014
Women will be able to get the contraceptive pill over the counter in pharmacies without a prescription under a controversial proposal before the nation’s medicine watchdog. AMA Chair of General Practice Dr Brian Morton said it was a significant issue because the pill does have risks for women.
A/Professor Brian Owler, 2SM Sydney, 6 November 2014
AMA President A/Professor Brian Owler talked about the Federal Government’s announcement to fund an Ebola medical centre built by the UK. A/Professor Owler said the AMA welcomes the announcement.
A/Professor Brian Owler, 2UE Sydney, 9 November 2014
AMA President A/Professor Brian Owler talked about educating young people on the harms of alcohol and drugs. A/Professor Owler said the best education was to try and get people to avoid taking these substances all together.
Dr Stephen Parnis, 2SER FM Sydney, 11 November 2014
AMA Vice President Dr Stephen Parnis talked about fee deregulation for medical students. Dr Parnis said it would be a recipe for inflation.
A/Professor Brian Owler, ABC NewsRadio, 19 November 2014
AMA President A/Professor Brian Owler discussed a new report by the Australian Commission of Safety and Quality in Healthcare that found up to a third of antibiotics prescribed in Australian hospitals were given out inappropriately. A/Professor Owler believes community expectations must be adjusted in line with the report.
Dr Stephen Parnis, Channel 10, 6 November 2014
A new study showed Australian hospital medical staff are being assaulted by drunk patients every day, and some hospitals found up to a third of emergency admissions are alcohol related. AMA Vice President Dr Stephen Parnis said doing something about alcohol would help improve emergency over-crowding.
A/Professor Brian Owler, Channel 9 Melbourne, 10 November 2014
AMA President A/Professor Brian Owler talked about a teenager who died of a suspected drug overdose at a Sydney dance festival. A/Professor Owler said the death was very tragic. He said it was incorrect to describe it as an overdose problem, because that implied there was a safe dose.
A/Professor Brian Owler, Channel 10, 13 November 2014
AMA President A/Professor Brian Owler discussed accusations the Federal Government was considering sneaky tactics to force Australians to pay an extra $7 for GP visits. A/Professor Owler said trying to bypass the Senate to introduce the $7 co-payment would show contempt for the Senate and the Australian public.