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AMA in the News – 15 July 2013

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.


Diet tea’s page shut after health horrors reported, Sun Herald, 30 June 2013
Health and medical experts warned that the laxative effect of fad dieting product SkinnyMe Tea can cause unhealthy weight loss. The AMA said using laxative products when they are not needed causes electrolyte and fluid loss.

Shed your habit, Sunday Herald Sun, 30 June 2013
Smokers’ shelters may be built near city hospitals to save visitors walking through clouds of smoke. The AMA said hospitals should be more active in encouraging patients and staff to quit smoking.

Doctors reap in the drug dollars, Adelaide Advertiser, 3 July 2013
A Medicines Australia working party suggested that drug companies should publicly record payments to doctors of more than $10. AMA Vice President Professor Geoffrey Dobb said the AMA is opposed to drug companies releasing an aggregate list of how much they pay each doctor.

Unproven therapies under fire, Adelaide Advertiser, 6 July 2013
AMA Vice President Professor Geoffrey Dobb said that taxpayers and health insurers should not be forced to pay for unproven natural therapies.

Low sign-up for eHealth, Adelaide Advertiser, 8 July 2013
AMA President Dr Steve Hambleton said the current e-health system is flawed because GPs and hospitals could not easily access and enter information in the system.

Drugs, straps used to control residents, The Age, 8 July 2013
There are concerns that chemical and physical restraint of dementia sufferers is used too frequently due to insufficient resources in nursing homes. Dr Hambleton agreed, and said many aged care facilities lacked the resources to provide non-pharmaceutical solutions.

White collar staff pan ‘tax on learning’, The Australian Financial Review, 9 July 2013
The AMA met with other professional groups to discuss the Scrap the Cap campaign. Dr Hambleton said the $2000 limit on tax deductions for self-education expenses would dumb down Australia.

Opposition mounts to Swan’s education cap, The Australian, 9 July 2013
Twenty-two peak professional and educational groups said a $2000 cap on tax deductions for self-education expenses was a tax on learning should be abandoned before it takes a toll on national productivity. Dr Hambleton said the policy was poorly informed and poorly implemented.


Dr Steve Hambleton, 666 ABC, 8 July 2013
AMA President Dr Steve Hambleton discussed the Government’s proposed cap on tax deductions for self-education expenses.

Dr Steve Hambleton, ABC Radio National, 9 July 2013
Dr Hambleton said safer packaging, better labelling and improved product design was needed for lithium batteries to prevent serious injuries in children.


Dr Steve Hambleton, SBS, 8 July 2013
Medical groups have warned that remote Indigenous communities may be the unintentional victims of the Federal Government’s savings measure to cap tax deductions for professionals who undertake self-education. AMA President Dr Steve Hambleton said self-education is more expensive for doctors working in remote areas because they have to travel large distances to attend conferences, workshops and training courses.