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Friday, 30 March 2012

Closing the Gap: A 10 year plan to improve Aboriginal Health

NSW Minister for Health, Jillian Skinner, has released Towards an Aboriginal Health Plan for NSW, a discussion and consultation paper to support the development of a new 10-year plan to improve Aboriginal health.

"The NSW Government is committed to closing the gap in health outcomes between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people," Minister Skinner said. "The discussion paper is the result of extensive consultation, which included individual stakeholder interviews, regional workshops, a Health and Wellbeing Forum and written submissions. Staff from the NSW Health system, the Aboriginal community controlled health sector and other partners, stakeholders and community members were all involved in the initial consultation process."

The Aboriginal Health Report Card, also released, provides a summary of the Aboriginal Health Report, highlighting the gap which exists between the health of indigenous and non-indigenous people including lower life expectancy, higher mortality rates for infants, higher rates of hospitalisation and chronic disease.

You can make a submission regarding "Towards an Aboriginal Health Plan for NSW" online at:
http://www.health.nsw.gov.au/publichealth/aboriginal/plan/index.asp
or make a submission by email to:
aboriginalconsultation@doh.health.nsw.gov.au
or by post to:
Aboriginal Health Plan Consultation, Centre for Aboriginal Health, NSW Ministry of Health, Locked Mail Bag 961, North Sydney, 2059
Submissions close 22 June 2012

Are regular chocolate eaters really thinner?


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Chocolate can be good for you … in moderation. AAP
People who eat chocolate on a regular basis tend to be thinner, even when they do not exercise more often, a new study claims.

But health experts have warned that the findings of the study, published today in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine, do not establish a direct link between the consumption of chocolate, which is high in calories and saturated fats, and a low body mass index (BMI).

Read the full article at "The Conversation".

Oral health and use of dental services (AIHW)

While nearly 60% of adult Australians visited the dentist in the year before a national dental survey was conducted, one in three say they avoid or delay dental visits because of the cost, according to Oral health and use of dental services 2008: findings from the National Dental Telephone Interview Survey 2008.

The report details self-reported oral health status and impacts of oral conditions of Australian adults. Key results on dental visiting, receipt of services and financial barriers to dental care are also provided.

Media release

New data shows more dental doom (AHHA)

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Risk factors contributing to chronic disease (AIHW)

Chronic diseases are responsible for a large portion of the disease burden in Australia, and many are highly preventable by reducing known risk factors. This report shows that:

* Most people have at least one risk factor and more than 90% do not consume enough vegetables.

* Social disadvantage is associated with risky health behaviours.

* Nearly 60%of Australians do not undertake sufficient levels of physical activity, and many of us (almost 80%) usually spend 3 or more hours sitting during our leisure time.

Full report

Media release

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Delays 'risking patient care' (Mental Health)

MENTAL health experts are voicing concerns at the glacial pace of the federal government's flagship mental health reforms, with none of the early psychosis intervention services or the flexible care packages yet delivered, nearly two years after first being promised.

Some experts warn the delay in opening the Early Psychosis Prevention and Intervention Centres, first promised in the 2010 budget, is creating pressures to push psychosis patients into other programs less suited to treat them.

Dementia carers are poorly paid but keep on going

Kathy Ger is the voice of dementia in remote Indigenous communities. As manager of the Malaneari Flexible Aged Care Centre, she looks after 15 Indigenous men and women on a daily basis. You can find Kathy in Borroloola on the McArthur River, about 50 kilometres upstream from the Gulf of Carpentaria.

About five years ago, researchers created a culturally appropriate test for Aboriginal people in remote Kimberley towns and Northern Territory communities to see how prevalent dementia was. Called the Kimberley Indigenous Cognitive Assessment (KICA), participants were asked questions orally instead of in the usual written form because many of them could not read or write.

Medical workforce 2010 (AIHW)

Medical workforce 2010 reveals that the supply of employed medical practitioners in Australia increased between 2006 and 2010, from 346 to 366 full-time equivalent practitioners per 100,000 population. The increase reflected a 13% rise in practitioner numbers. The gender balance continued to shift, with women making up 37% of practitioners in 2010 compared to 34% in 2006.

The average hours worked each week by medical practitioners declined slightly from 43.5 to 43.3 hours. The group with the longest average hours worked per week was Specialists-in-training at 49.9 hours, while General practitioners averaged 39.2 hours a week.

Media release

New Mental Health and Insurance website

Australians with experience of mental illness are not able to access insurance at the same rates as Australians who have not experienced mental illness. They often endure increased premiums, restrictions on their policies and outright rejection of their applications and claims when a history of mental illness is disclosed. In more recent times, it has become evident that there is a lack of understanding of insurance applications and claims processes, and how mental illness impacts on them.

The Mental Health and Insurance Project website is designed to connect Australians with experience of mental illness and their carers with reliable and accurate information about insurance products and policies, how mental illness impacts on applications and claims processes, consumer rights and responsibilities and avenues for complaints and appeals. The website also hosts a "Tell Your Story" section, where you can submit your personal experiences (positive and negative!) to the MHCA and beyondblue to support their work in the area of mental health, discrimination and insurance.

Monday, 26 March 2012

New magnesium guidelines could help save lives of premature babies

Leading obstetric and neonatal specialists are calling on Australian hospitals to implement groundbreaking new guidelines that have the potential to save the lives of, or minimise cerebral palsy risks in, up to 147 Australian babies each year. The guidelines, which are the focus of discussion this week at the Perinatal Society of Australia & New Zealand (PSANZ) Conference in Sydney recommend the administration of magnesium sulphate to pregnant women immediately prior to a very premature birth (22-30 weeks) to help prevent cerebral palsy.

However, despite this being a groundbreaking step for the prevention of cerebral palsy and death in very premature babies, Professor Caroline Crowther says that the therapy remains underused. "This is the biggest breakthrough in world cerebral palsy prevention research in the past 50 years and has come via research throughout the world with Australian research teams and funding leading," says Professor Crowther. "Implementation of these guidelines has the potential to save the lives, or minimise cerebral palsy risks, in up to 147 Australian babies each year."

Media release

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Suicide an increasingly frequent cause of death in Australia (ABS Report)

Suicide rates are steadily increasing according to the latest Causes of Death Report released by the Australia Bureau of Statistics. This report records deaths by suicide for 2010 at 2,361, an increase of 480 deaths from 2007 - a useful baseline year when revised methods in data collection were adopted by the ABS.

The Australia Bureau of Statistics data on Causes of Death for 2010 show that the number of suicide deaths in Australia has increased since 2007, indicating that as a country we cannot be complacent. "More can be done to prevent this tragic cause of death," the Executive Director of the Lifeline Foundation, Alan Woodward said.

While Australia's suicide rate of 10.5 per 100,000 is relatively low by world standards, closer examination of the data shows male suicides account for around three quarters of these deaths, and that the male suicide rate peaks at 27.7 per 100,000 in the age group 40-44 years.

"The rates of death by suicide amongst males in Australia are high by any comparison," Mr Woodward said. "We also know there is a significant over representation of suicide in GBLTI and Indigenous communities, as well as in rural and remote Australians. If we are truly serious about closing the gap in Indigenous health and wellbeing, and in Indigenous life expectancy, then suicide should be front and centre for policy makers in this arena. In addition, we need to see more mitigation work at suicide hotspots, more public awareness about the myths and realities of suicide, and more activity that encourages help-seeking behaviours from at risk groups."

For more information on suicide prevention, visit www.lifeline.org.au. If you or someone you know needs crisis support, call 13 11 14.

Charlatan Training: How Aboriginal Health Workers Are Being Short-changed

An Australian policy think tank says Aboriginal health workers are expected to do much more than they are trained for. A Centre for Independent Studies report, Charlatan Training: How Aboriginal Health Workers Are Being Short-changed says Indigenous health workers are often expected to do the job of a nurse, as well as being a community worker and translator.

Researcher Sara Hudson says federal, state and territory governments need to define the role and train workers appropriately. "The general Aboriginal health worker role is quite a broad one," she said. "There has been a lot of difficulty in actually defining what their responsibilities are. "And because it is so broad, many Aboriginal people who are working as a health worker actually feel that they're a jack of all trades and they feel overburdened with all their responsibilities."

The report says many Aboriginal people have made a "rational" decision not to become health workers. The report says many workers feel they are expected to do too much and their training is substandard.

Rural teachers will benefit from social and emotional wellbeing training

A unique program that equips teachers to better understand and help young people with mental health issues will be rolled out to secondary schools across Australia, thanks to a new partnership between the Black Dog Institute and nib foundation.

A $500,000 grant from nib foundation will enable the Black Dog Institute to train 1,500 high school teachers in the innovative HeadStrong program over the next three years, helping to reach 90,000 students, with a particular focus on rural and remote locations.

Executive Director of the Black Dog Institute, Professor Helen Christensen, said the program was an important social initiative that provided a creative way of thinking, talking and teaching about mood disorders.

New report shows effectiveness of Indigenous health research institute

A new report has been released showing that Australia's leading Indigenous health research institute makes a significant economic and social contribution to the nation. Released on the eve of Close the gap day, the report by Deloitte Access Economics revealed the Menzies School of Health Research made a social and economic contribution of $393 million to the Australian economy - $87 million to the Northern Territory alone - from 2002 to 2010.

Ms Lynne Pezzullo, lead partner of Deloitte's Health Economics and Social Policy group said, "Menzies not only contributes economically, it also contributes to addressing one of our nation's most important equity issues, as the majority of Menzies efforts are focused on improving the health of Indigenous Australians."

Press release

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Lost in the Labyrinth: Report on the inquiry into registration processes and support for overseas trained doctors

Chair of the House of Representatives Health and Ageing Committee, Steve Georganas has tabled the long-awaited report for the inquiry into registration and support processes for international medical graduates (IMGs).

The report contains 45 recommendations to improve transparency, efficiency and accountability in the registration system for IMGs and is the result of a 14 month inquiry in which the committee heard evidence from 146 witnesses across every state and territory in Australia.

Key recommendations include:

* establishment a "one stop shop" to assist IMGs in navigating accreditation and registration processes.

* a review of the 10 year moratorium requiring IMGs to work in a District of Workforce Shortage for up to 10 years to be eligible for a Medicare Provider Number;

* an increase in the validity period for English language test results from 2 years to 4 years when applying for certain forms of medical registration;

* establishment of a central document repository for IMG paperwork to reduce duplication and administrative inefficiency

Media release

Rural Health Workforce Australia comments

Rural health groups want action on findings of doctors' inquiry(ABC)

Bush towns welcome review on overseas doctors (ABC report and video)

The Desk : Online program for tertiary students launched!

The Desk is a new online interactive program that aims to provide Australian tertiary students with strategies and skills for success and wellbeing during their time at university or TAFE. The Desk has a range of activities and learning modules (such as getting things done and staying calm) which are based on research into the prevention and treatment of mental health problems. To find out more, watch the video and visit The Desk.

New guidelines individualise CKD treatment action plans - Kidney Health Australia

A new treatment staging system for chronic kidney disease (CKD) and a call for regular testing of patients at high risk of CKD are highlighted in new treatment guidelines released this week by Kidney Health Australia.

In its latest edition of Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) Management in General Practice, Kidney Health Australia has developed a system that matches the level and severity of chronic kidney disease with treatment action plans for general practitioners. The new guidelines also highlight the need to test annually for kidney disease in patients with diabetes and hypertension and every two years for patients who are obese, have established cardiovascular disease, smoke, have a family history of CKD or are Indigenous Australians.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Diabetes: the silent pandemic and its impact on Australia

Diabetes is a challenging problem for public health worldwide. This new report by the Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute investigates why growing numbers of Australians are diagnosed with this silent deadly disease each year.

It is a chronic disorder in which a person has high blood sugar, either because the body does not produce enough insulin, or because cells do not respond adequately to the insulin that is produced. There are two main types of diabetes:

* type 1 diabetes, which is characterised by the autoimmune destruction of the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas

* type 2 diabetes, which is the most common form and is characterised by a reduced production of insulin and an inability of the body tissues to respond fully to insulin.

As there is currently no cure for diabetes, the condition requires lifelong management. In the case of type 1 diabetes, this means keeping blood glucose levels within safe levels through multiple daily insulin injections or a continuous infusion of insulin through an insulin pump. For type 2 diabetes, blood glucose levels are managed through medication, diet, and exercise or a combination of these.

People with diabetes frequently also require treatment to lower cholesterol and blood pressure levels. However, despite reaching epidemic levels globally, type 2 diabetes remains under-reported, in part because often people do not realise they have it until they develop complications.

Media Release

Roadmap to Close the Gap for vision: full report

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are currently six times more likely to go blind than the general population and 94 percent of the vision loss is unnecessary, preventable, or treatable. The Roadmap to Close the Gap for Vision project has been conducted by the Indigenous Eye Health Unit at The University of Melbourne. The aim is to "Close the Gap for Vision" by eliminating the known differences in the standard of eye health in Indigenous Australians compared to mainstream Australians.

The overall aim of this review of health service provision was to develop a model of eye care for Indigenous Australians for presentation to the Australian Government. The project objectives included the identification of the specific limitations and restrictions of the current funding mechanisms that support visiting eye care services to remote areas; the identification of barriers to access for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to existing eye care services in urban and rural areas and ways to overcome them; the identification of key components in enhancing the pathway of care for the provision of eye services through Aboriginal Health Services; and the identification of the economic implications of the proposed policy changes.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Namoi workshops for rural women (CRRMH RAMHP Program)

Rural women are invited to attend one of three workshops being held in the Namoi catchment to help them build resilience in the face of change in agriculture and the climate. Rural Women Building Resilience in the Face of Change workshops will be held at Bendemeer, Mullaley and Wee Waa on March 20, 21 and 22.

Jennifer Caine from the Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health will discuss the current and future risks to health from climate change, and the responses that will be necessary. The Australian Farm Institute’s Mick Keogh will speak about the challenges of natural resource management and opportunities such as carbon farming. NSW DPI climatologist, Michael Cashen, will provide an overview of what is happening with the climate and its effect on farming.

Mental health goes virtual

Online counseling therapy will be available to Australians through federal health services following an open tender for qualified organizations to deliver the Virtual Clinic service . The Department of Health and Ageing will be searching for qualified organizations to develop and deliver the program, which will provide online counseling with the assistance of a therapist, for those with low to moderate levels of mental disorders.

An investment of $20 million over 3 years will be provided for the Virtual clinic, which will be accessible through the government’s mental health portal, due to go live in July.

Showdown with victims fails to stop youth crime

A youth conferencing program which puts young offenders face-to-face with their victims of crime has been found to be no more effective than the NSW Children's Court in reducing juvenile reoffending.

"The fundamental problem with restorative justice programs is that they don't deal with the underlying problems of juvenile offending, problems such as impulsive behaviour, drug and alcohol abuse, poor parenting, poor school performance and the inability to get a job," Dr Weatherburn said.

Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/showdown-with-victims-fails-to-stop-youth-crime-20120315-1v857.html#ixzz1pEcZ5DNN

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Closing the Gap Prime Minister's Report 2012

The Prime Minister reports annually on progress in Closing the Gap. This is the fourth annual report, tabled in Parliament on 15 February 2012. The Closing the gap Prime Minister's report 2012 outlines the progress made towards meeting the nation's targets to close the gap in life expectancy, early childhood, health, education and employment between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.

The most positive changes in Indigenous health status described in this year's report have been in the areas of child and overall mortality. The report states that the nation is on track to meet the under-five mortality target with a continued decline in mortality rates for Indigenous children - falling by 48% from 1991 to 2010 across the three jurisdictions in which long-term comparison is possible (Western Australia, South Australia and the Northern Territory).

Overall Indigenous mortality rates have declined by 36% from 1991 to 2010 in the three jurisdictions for which reliable data are available for this period (Western Australia, South Australia and the Northern Territory).

In her parliamentary speech, Prime Minister Gillard said that 'Closing the gap on life expectancy by 2031 remains the most challenging target of all.'

Press release

Australia's health 2012 conference - Have we got what it takes?

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare is proud to launch their flagship report Australia's health 2012 at a national conference at the National Convention Centre, in Canberra on Thursday 21 June 2012. The conference will highlight the latest authoritative information on the heath of Australians, and the Australian health system, in the context of health reforms.

The full conference program including speaker details, biographies, conference fees, accommodation and parking details can be found on the conference web site.

New booklet showcases good practice in Indigenous medical education

Leaders in Indigenous Medical Education (LIME) has launched the inaugural edition of the LIME Good practice case studies resource.

This booklet, which is the first in a series, showcases examples of good practice in Indigenous medical education from medical schools across Australia and Aotearoa/New Zealand. The booklet includes 13 case studies in the categories of recruitment and retention, curriculum design, teaching and learning and community engagement. It will support medical schools to share their expertise and resources, be inspired by work being undertaken elsewhere in the field and strengthen all Indigenous medical curricula. It will also contribute to further developing the evidence base for Indigenous medical education.

View information: Good Practice Case Studies

View website: LIME Network

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

NSW Tobacco Strategy 2012-2017


The NSW Tobacco Strategy 2012-2017 provides an overarching framework for the actions that the NSW Government will lead to reduce smoking and tobacco related harm in NSW. The Strategy includes:

* A focus on addressing tobacco smoking in populations with high smoking rates, particularly Aboriginal communities, women smoking in pregnancy, mental health consumers and people in corrections facilities;
* Enhanced programs to help smokers quit; and
* Measures to protect people from harmful second-hand smoke in outdoor areas.

"Talking About Change" : Motivational interviewing for health professionals (Free DVD)

The team at South Eastern Sydney Local Health District (SESLHD) have developed a training DVD to introduce health professionals to Motivational Interviewing, sometimes known as "Change Talk". Motivational Interviewing is a technique that health professionals can use as a brief intervention to support clients to make positive lifestyle changes.

It aims to make communication more effective by using skills such as open ended questioning and active listening to help clients develop solutions through realistic goal setting.

Many of the skills of motivational interviewing are demonstrated in the DVD by midwives working with women who need to make healthier lifestyle choices during pregnancy. The DVD also includes testimonials from midwives who describe the benefits of using the technique.

An extract from the DVD is available on the ARCHI website. The full DVD is available from the SESLHD Women's Health and Community Partnerships Unit. Contact :

Helen Rogers, Early Parenting Program Coordinator, Women's Health and Community Partnerships, Randwick Campus, Avoca Street, Randwick, NSW
Phone: 02 9382 8297 Email : Helen.Rogers@sesiahs.health.nsw.gov.au

Chronic condition management strategies in Aboriginal communities (Lowitja Institute )

Report Cover
This is the final report of a project intended to evaluate, and where possible, develop and demonstrate effective and transferable chronic condition management strategies, and to generate research evidence about their processes, impacts and health outcomes.

Clinical data from the health service records of 36 clients involved in chronic condition management, collected over 1-10 years, were analysed retrospectively. Individual clinical data were mapped against information from interviews and case notes to produce individual client graphs showing change in health indicators over time in relation to introduction of chronic condition management interventions, eg care plans, and other life events.

Semi-structured interviews with 18 clients and 12 staff explored how they approached and managed chronic conditions, and their experiences and ideas about what works, what doesn't and why. Thematic and grounded theory analysis of the qualitative data identified benefits, barriers and enablers of chronic condition management strategies.

Monday, 12 March 2012

Cancer incidence projections (AIHW)

Cancer incidence projections, Australia 2011 to 2020 presents detailed projections of cancer incidence in Australia based on trends in national cancer incidence data from 1982 to 2007. It shows the number of cases of cancer diagnosed in Australia each year is projected to rise over the next decade for both males and females, and is expected to reach about 150,000 in 2020, with prostate and breast cancer continuing to be the most common cancers diagnosed in men and women respectively.

Media release

Overview of Australian Indigenous health status 2011 (Australia Indigenous Health Information )

This overview of Australian Indigenous health draws largely on previously published information, some of which has been re-analysed to provide clearer comparisons between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people (for more details of statistics and methods, readers should refer to the original sources). Very little information is available separately for Australian Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders, but, wherever possible, separate information has been provided.

Incidence of insulin-treated diabetes, 2000-2009 (AIHW)

The latest data about the incidence (the number of new cases) of insulin-treated diabetes from the National Diabetes Register are reported here and cover the period 2000 to 2009. During this period, 222,544 people began using insulin to treat their diabetes. Of these, 77% had Type 2 diabetes, 12% had gestational diabetes and 10% had Type 1 diabetes. The remaining 1% had other types of diabetes.

Caring for people who sniff petrol or other volatile substances: a quick reference guide for health workers

This quick reference guide contains information about how to care for people who deliberately become intoxicated by inhaling vapours from solvents, gases or aerosols (often called sniffing, bagging, huffing or chroming). People sniff for different reasons, just as people get drunk for different reasons. Sniffable products include petrol, paint stripper and other products used in building and plumbing, glue, nail polish remover, fuel gas, lighter fluid, spray paint and other spray cans.

This guide is a summary of the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) consensus-based clinical practice guideline for the management of volatile substance use in Australia(the full guideline). It is designed for quick reference by general practitioners, nurses, Aboriginal health workers, alcohol and other drug workers, and allied health professionals. Use the full guideline if you need more detailed information.

The clinical guideline provides mainly consensus-based recommendations, because there is not enough high-level evidence to make evidence-based recommendations. The guideline also provides practice points on some additional topics that were not included in the clinical questions answered by the guideline.

Friday, 9 March 2012

Looking at links between depression and insomnia (Monash University study)

People with both insomnia and depression who have found anti-depressants ineffective can draw hope from a new study currently recruiting in Melbourne.

Led by Doctorate of Clinical Psychology candidate Damon Ashworth and Associate Professor Shantha Rajaratnam of Monash University's School of Psychology and Psychiatry, the study is further examining the well-established link between sleep disorders and depression. "New information is suggesting that, in some cases, insomnia pre-dates and leads to the depressive episode," Mr Ashworth said.

Australians Deserve to Age Well Blueprint for Reform.

Palliative Care Australia (PCA) is a member of the National Aged Care Alliance (NACA), which has released the Australians Deserve to Age Well Blueprint for Reform. "The Blueprint lays out a step by step process for reform," said CEO Dr Yvonne Luxford.

"Nobody expects these changes to happen overnight, but we need to make a start and we need the entire political spectrum to support change commencing in this year's budget. We know that older Australians want to have access to high quality palliative care and to have as much control over their death as possible, which includes being able to die at home. But we also know that the current aged care system isn't meeting their end of life care needs."

PCA and NACA are calling for palliative care to be a funding priority; for linkages between residential and community aged care providers and local specialist palliative care services to be improved; the removal of barriers preventing people accessing community aged care and specialist palliative care services simultaneously; and ensuring the Gateway supports access to advance care planning and palliative care services.

Media Release

Thursday, 8 March 2012

SurgWiki - a free surgical resource

SurgWiki focuses on general and speciality surgery. Based on Joe Tjandra's bestselling Textbook of Surgery, each topic in SurgWiki has been written by an expert in the field.

The site is organized under 4 main sections:

* General Concepts
* Surgical Technique
* Pre-operative Care
* Specialty Interests

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Asthma first aid charts launched

The National Asthma Council Australia has updated its popular "First Aid for Asthma chart" and launched a new "Kids' First Aid for
Asthma chart,
with advice reflecting the latest evidence and medications. Both charts clearly outline the established 4 step process for handling an asthma attack using typical reliever medications such as Ventolin, Asmol or Airomir, including treatment information as well as practical advice on how to help someone in physical distress use their asthma inhaler correctly and when to call an ambulance. For the first time, the First Aid for Asthma chart also includes an alternate treatment column showing in detail how Bricanyl or Symbicort can be used in an emergency, even if this is not the patient's standard medication. The charts can be downloaded from the National Asthma Council Australia website.

"What nurses want" : Overstretched and undervalued nurses set to leave the profession

Australia's healthcare system is set to suffer a nursing exodus with a new national survey showing 15% of nurses intending to quit the profession in the next 12 months, the Australian Nursing Federation(ANF)warned. Excessive workloads due to lack of funded positions for nursing staff and the feeling they lack the recognition they deserve as health care professionals, were among the main reasons nurses want to leave the profession, according to What Nurses Want, the first national survey on nurses' attitudes to work and work conditions in Australia.

The survey, carried out by the Monash University Department of Management, found a very overstretched and undervalued workforce: - 38% of nurses reported high to very high levels of stress and burnout; half did not trust their employer to keep promises; and only 40% were content with their pay and conditions (compared to 75% from the broader working population).

Press release

Monday, 5 March 2012

The Superguide: a handbook for supervising allied health professionals

The Allied Health Directorate of the Clinical Education and Training Institute (CETI), in collaboration with the NSW Allied Health Directors Network, has developed a publication titled The Superguide: a handbook for supervising allied health professionals to support allied health professionals within NSW Health providing supervision to allied health staff. It contains information on:

* supervising allied health professionals in ways that contribute to the safety and better care of patients
* effective methods of contributing to the education, welfare and professionals development of allied health professionals

Self assessment checklist for surgical services in NSW public hospitals

The Surgery Program Assessment Checklist, one of the newest resources available from ARCHI, has been specifically designed for hospitals to assess the essential components for a robust surgical program. The Checklist aims to assist hospitals to identify areas for improvement.

Ideally the checklist should be completed by two people (one of whom should be independent to the processes being reviewed). As this Checklist is in the early stages of its use, your feedback is encouraged and welcomed and should be forwarded to Judy Willis. juwil@doh.health.nsw.gov.au