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Welcome to the AMA's online newsletter

1 December 2014 Issue # 69

Feedback on Med e-link (WA) is welcomed. Send your views to .

Overseas trained doctors remain vital to our health-care system: AMA (WA)

Overseas trained doctors continue to be a vital part of the Western Australian health system despite the recent decision by the Health Department to cease employing international medical graduates to junior doctor positions in local public hospitals, Australian Medical Association (WA) President Dr Michael Gannon has said.


Dr Gannon said he welcomed the announcement by Health Department Director General Professor Bryant Stokes that the investment in additional local medical students had begun to have a positive impact.

“The fact that we are now educating enough doctors in our two medical schools demonstrates they are working as they should and are now supplying our local needs.”

But OTDs will always be necessary and will always be welcome, he added.


For more information, please click here


Push to ban solaria in WA

The AMA (WA) is extremely pleased that the State Government has confirmed that it will ban commercial solaria in WA, however more concrete information on the proposed ban is required. 

Since highlighting the issue in 2013, the AMA (WA) has continued to advocate for a ban of commercial solaria in WA, consistent with bans that will be introduced on 1 January 2015 in Queensland, Victoria, NSW, SA and the ACT.


As part of this advocacy, the AMA (WA) raised the issue with the Minister for Health at various meetings, wrote to the Minister providing a compelling case for a ban and communicated with all State MPs highlighting the dangers of solaria to the health of Western Australians. The Association has ensured that the issue retains a high public profile thanks to AMA (WA) President Dr Michael Gannon's comments to the media.


The latest step has been to place an advertisement in The West Australian newspaper in collaboration with the Cancer Council of WA – an open letter to Government members of WA Parliament urging them to take responsibility for the urgent introduction of legislation to ban commercial solaria in WA.


The AMA (WA) will continue to provide updates on this issue when available. 


Successful Appeal in Dekker Case

Many WA doctors are aware of the case of WA Radiologist, Dr Leila Dekker, who has just won an appeal against a finding of improper conduct by failing to give first aid at a car accident in Roebourne 12 years ago. Dr Dekker was found guilty by the State Administrative Tribunal earlier this year because she failed to stop when an out of control vehicle narrowly missed her vehicle at a T intersection and rolled into a ditch.


Dr Dekker asserted to the Tribunal that she heard but did not see the crash, had no torch (it was dark at the time) or mobile phone and felt unsafe to attend at the scene due to well-known incidences of violence in the area.


The WA Court of Appeal reversed the Tribunal’s decision saying it had erred in deciding that there was a specific professional duty on a medical practitioner to attend and provide assistance to a person who was not a patient.


The AMA (WA) had strongly criticised the Tribunal decision, had made representation to the Medical Board of WA and had conducted surveys of members to ascertain their views on the case. Overwhelmingly, WA doctors expressed dismay and discomfort at the implications for the medical profession.


The original Tribunal decision had resulted in considerable concern amongst the medical profession in WA with much uncertainty around the obligations surrounding ‘Good Samaritan Acts’. The appeal decision will provide some reassurance to doctors that there is no specific professional duty to render assistance and that in an emergency situation, a range of factors needed to be taken into account.


For more information, please contact Christine Kane


GP toolkit on domestic violence welcomed

A new toolkit designed to help general practitioners identify the signs of domestic violence has been welcomed by Australian Medical Association (WA) President Dr Michael Gannon.

“We know that women who suffer from domestic violence tend to visit GPs and hospitals more often, and it is vital that a resource is available so more cases are identified and the necessary support is provided," Dr Gannon said. 


For more information and to view the toolkit, please click here


Part-Time Portal for junior doctors

The lack of access to flexible working arrangements is one of the key issues affecting junior doctors in Western Australia and in a recent survey undertaken by the AMA (WA), a staggering 90 per cent of junior doctors surveyed stated they would be likely to request access to flexible working arrangements at some point in their careers.


Junior doctors who require access to flexible working arrangements are usually asked to pair themselves up with another junior doctor in order to secure part-time employment in the form of a shared job arrangement.


With this in mind, the AMA (WA) made the decision to develop the Part-Time Doctor Portal to facilitate this process by providing a space for junior doctors to share information with one another and to search for potential ‘part-time partners’.


Advocacy for greater access to flexible working arrangements for all junior doctors in Western Australia will continue, but in the meantime the AMA (WA) hopes that this Portal will assist members in obtaining a position.


The Portal can be accessed through the AMA (WA) website and is available for all junior doctor members of the AMA (WA).

For more information, please contact Nicola Roman


AMA Clinical images guide

The AMA has released a new guide for medical students and doctors on the proper use of personal mobile devices when taking and transmitting clinical images.


Whilst it is not in dispute that the use of clinical images aids in the diagnosis and treatment of patients, statistics show that many doctors are not aware of the legalities associated with capturing an image on a personal mobile device.


The guide outlines the legal, professional and ethical obligations associated with the capture and use of clinical images.


Unfortunately, current WA Health information technology solutions do not allow for the clinician to integrate this data with the patient record, preventing clinicians from following these best practice standards.


The AMA (WA) will be seeking to work with WA Health to develop appropriate internal policies and appropriate changes to current IT strategies.


To view the guide, please click here


Termination payments - getting it right

The Australian Medical Association has received a number of queries in relation to the correct calculation of final payments to employees on termination. 


Paying an employee correctly on termination of their employment is vital, not only for the reputation of the employer, but also in order to avoid claims of underpayments and unlawful terminations.


For a comprehensive set of principles to be considered for the proper application of the checklist, please refer to the latest Private Practice Bulletin.


Members who wish to recieve the Private Practice Bulletin on a regular basis can register their interest to Puanna-Lea Kapi


OTDNET applications now open

Are you an overseas trained doctor looking to attain specialist registration as a General Practitioner in Australia?


The OTDNET Sub-program B is designed to help overseas trained doctors (OTDs) with General or Limited Registration, who are working in a General Practice environment, prepare to undertake the required assessments of the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM) or the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP).

Delivered over a twelve month time frame, the program is specifically designed to:

• Enhance your clinical and communication skills
• Prepare you for sitting your Fellowship examination.


Please note that applications close on Wednesday 14 January 2015.

For more information and to apply please click here visit  or contact WAGPET via email.


Report on the health and wellbeing of WA males

Not for profit health promotion charity MAN has released its inaugural report on the health and wellbeing status of West Australian males.


The report provides a snapshot of male health in the State and assesses the factors associated with poor health outcomes for males in WA. 

The report can be accessed here.


A hard copy of the report is also available to all doctors in WA at no cost. 


To register your interest in a hard copy of the report, please contact Melissa Frey.


CCU RMO position available

Mount Hospital is offering a new full time position as a Coronary Care Resident Medical Officer starting in January 2015.


Mount Hospital is embarking on an expansion of its Cardiology services, offering a comprehensive education and training program, in addition to extensive clinical experience, to
Coronary Care residents joining the Unit.


There will be additional University and research opportunities should you wish to pursue them.


For enquiries and further information on this position, please click here.


Does your practice need clerical staff?

AMA Recruit can help.


We currently have numerous candidates available with a high degree of experience across varying specialties who are available for work throughout the metropolitan area.


Our recruitment service specializes in placements for permanent positions in specialist rooms and general practice and our service will be customised to meet your individual needs.


Should you be interested in recruiting clerical staff through AMA Recruit, please contact us on 9273 3033 or via email for further information.

CCU Registrar wanted

Mount Hospital is offering an exciting new position as a Coronary Care Registrar.

This position is full time with commencement date in January

Mount  Hospital is a 224 bed private hospital with 9 operating theatres and two catheter laboratories.


The hospital has the biggest Coronary Care Unit in the state, a state-of-the-art Level 3 Intensive Care Unit, and one of the busiest cardiothoracic units in Australia.

For enquiries and further information on this position, please click here.

2014 Light Up Leederville Carnival

The third annual 2014 Light Up Leederville Carnival presented by Alcohol.Think Again. on Sunday 7 December will this year feature the inaugural The West Australian Local Music Stage.

Curated by The Funk Club and supported by the Department of Culture and The Arts and The West Australian, the stage will showcase local, contemporary, original Western Australian music to an expected crowd of 70,000 people from 12-8pm, for FREE.


For more information, please click here


Enjoy great savings this Christmas

To celebrate the festive period, The Bose Store in Subiaco is offering AMA (WA) members an exclusive 10 per cent discount on all marked items. 

For more information, please contact the friendly team at The Bose Store Subiaco via email.


Win tickets for four to Paddington!

To celebrate the release of PADDINGTON in Australia (In cinemas from 11 December), Medicus Magazine together with Studiocanal Australia are offering you the chance to win family passes (admit four). 



Simply email Des Michael for your chance to win!


Member Benefits

A wide variety of exciting events and movies are on offer in this month's On The Town.

To enter, visit AMA (WA) for your chance to win free double passes to one of these events.

Remember, AMA (WA) members have exclusive access to discounts across a wide range of goods and services. Various categories of benefits are available and these can be viewed by visiting Member Benefits.

Not a member? Join now!


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