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AMA Family Doctor Week

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The AMA’s annual celebration of the hard work and dedication of the nation’s family doctors, Family Doctor Week, begins today.

For 2013, the AMA has adopted the theme Your Family Doctor – Your Medical Home, to emphasise the vital role played by GPs at the frontline of the nation’s health care system.

For most Australians, their family doctor is their first port of call when they need medical care, and Family Doctor Weeks is an opportunity to highlight the crucial work they do, and what can and should be done to make it easier to provide quality care.

This year, Chair of the Council of General Practice Dr Brian Morton and fellow Council members have made two short videos to present key issues and concerns for the nation’s family doctors.

The first, released yesterday (Sunday, 14 July) highlighted issues affecting primary care and what the AMA is doing to promote and protect the interests of general practitioners.

The second, to be released on Tuesday 16 July, warns that patients may be hit with higher charges unless the Government immediately increases the Medicare rebate.

The videos can be viewed at https://ama.com.au/video/ama-home-family-doctors and https://ama.com.au/video/family-doctors-your-medical-home

Throughout the week, which runs from 15 to 21 July, AMA President Dr Steve

Hambleton will discuss ways the Government can provide greater support for family doctors to allow them to continue serving their local communities.

Dr Hambleton will address the National Press Club on 17 July and officially launch the AMA Key Health Issues for the Federal Election 2013 document, which outlines the main health concerns the AMA wants to see the political parties address in the lead-up to the Federal election due later this year.

State and Territory AMAs have also been spreading the word about Family Doctor Week to local GPs, encouraging them to speak to their local Member of Parliament about ways the Government can provide greater support for family doctors.

In addition, the AMA has produced and distributed posters celebrating the important work done by family doctors and highlighting the drop in value of Medicare rebates.

To find out more about AMA Family Doctor Week 2013, visit:  https://ama.com.au/familydoctorweek2013

Kirsty Waterford