North East Valley DGP eNews

No 1217: May 24, 2012
eNews is a weekly electronic newsletter sent to all GP practices (with email addresses) within the NEV catchment. The aim is to provide up to date information relevant to GPs and to disseminate the latest activities and resources from the division. All feedback and enquiries welcome and should be addressed to Patty Marshall. You can also visit our website at:
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In this issue:

Editorial                                                The eHealth Challenge        

Chronic Disease Management            NDSS Online Services Directory      

Professional Development                 CPD events   

Immunisation                                       Making immunisation ideas happen           

Information Management                  Medical Director Tips

Items of interest                                  BeAWARE: signs for heart attack and stroke - Online training for non-clinical staff  

News for Practice Staff                       Practice Nurse Incentive Program, “PNIP will 'nip' a lot of unfunded services in the bud”   

Women’s Health                                  General Update on Pregnancy Care, Vulvo Vaginal Issues             

Positions vacant/wanted                            

Fun stuff                                                        


A Word from the Editor

The eHealth Challenge

eHealth and its challenges are certainly on the agenda, particularly with the Personally Controlled Electronic Health Record (PCEHR) coming into being on July 1, 2012. Also there will be changes to the PIP eHealth in 2013 which will include a practice implementing the PCEHR, online prescriptions, secure messaging and correct coding of clinical information.

The division is providing information on most of these at its “eHealth Challenge” information evening on June 13th 2012. The key note speaker will be the well-known eHealth advocate Dr Mukesh Haikerwal, Head of Clinical Leadership and Engagement, National E-Health Transition Authority (NEHTA). The evening is also the last formal session (the “Final Bash”) to be held by the North East Valley Division and it will be our chance to say “see you later”. On the evening we will also outline where continued support for GP practices will come from.

If you haven’t already applied to attend this information evening the invitation is on our website and below under CPD.


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Chronic Disease Management

NDSS Online Services Directory

The NDSS Online Services Directory is a list of health professionals who can assist in the management of diabetes. Search for doctors, endocrinologists, credentialed diabetes educators, dietitians and other health professionals in your area.

NDSS Access Points:  You can search the NDSS Online Services Directory for a list of NDSS Access Points in your patient’s area.

Health professionals on the NDSS Online Services Directory: Diabetes health professionals are encouraged to register their details on the Online Services Directory. Please click here to register your details. For further information about the NDSS Online Services Directory please contact


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Continuing Professional Development

The Final Bash – June 13, 2012

On June 13th the division will be holding its last CPD activity. The main item on the agenda is eHealth and there will be 3 main components of the evening:

The eHealth Challenge  - the key note speaker is: Dr Mukesh Haikerwal AO, Head of Clinical Leadership and Engagement, National E-Health Transition Authority (NEHTA).

Future of the Division - update presented by Dr Peter Eizenberg, Chair, NEVDGP Board

    Why are we winding down? What happens now?

    Where and how do practices get their support, particularly in eHealth. From whom?

eHealth past and future  – presented by Noel Stewart, IM Program Officer, NEVDGP

    Where we have come from – a celebration of past achievements

    Where to now? For you? For us?

    Lots of movie clips, prizes and awards

For the invitation to attend, click here.


Management of the Bariatric Patient

Thursday 6 June 6.15pm to 9.00pm at Kingston Links Golf Course & Function Centre, Corporate Road, Rowville. See flyer.


Northern Health GP Winter Master Class Series

Thursday 31st May - Gastroenterology

Thursday 14th June - Respiratory

These master classes will be full of useful, practical information regarding the GP management of common gastroenterological and respiratory conditions.

They will include identifying when and who to investigate; How to obtain and interpret these investigations; When to screen and when to refer, as well as guidance on the optimum management of the patient while waiting for specialist review. Total CPD points: 4 (Category 2) per evening, subject to RACGP approval

6.30 pm – Registration & Refreshments, 7.00 pm – 9.00pm – Master Class at Lecture Theatre, The Northern Hospital, 185 Cooper Street, Epping

For registration contact Karen Overall on 8405 8705 or


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Making immunisation ideas happen

Sanofi Pasteur is calling on GPs, nurses and other Australian immunisation providers to submit original immunisation ideas for their chance to receive a share of $100,000 in unrestricted educational grants.  Entrants can submit creative ideas based on five different categories, which are aligned with the benchmarks set by the Department of Health & Ageing, and allow immunisation providers to be recognised for their efforts to improve immunisation in Australia.
The five $20,000 grants will be awarded to immunisation providers with a bright idea in the following categories:

·         Applying innovation in areas of low immunisation

·         Increasing vaccination coverage for Indigenous Australians

·         Increasing vaccination coverage for four year olds

·         Decreasing vaccine wastage and leakage

·         Improving collaboration within a Medicare Local to promote the NIP across multiple immunisation providers and the wider community.

Ideas can be submitted to and will be open from 7 May 2012, closing on 30 September at 5pm EST. The winners will be announced in November at the AGPN National Forum in Adelaide.


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Information Management

$50m Extra For PCEHR Implementation

The extra funds come on the back of a change to the eHealth Practice Incentive Program (PIP) announced in last week's federal budget, which will now require GPs to participate in the PCEHR system to become eligible.

The government has also released more details on how the changes to the PIP will work. In a statement, Ms Plibersek said that from February 2013, up to $50,000 will be available to each practice that shows it has a number of capabilities.

These include:

·         secure messaging

·         integrating healthcare identifiers into electronic practice records

·         using data records and clinical coding of diagnoses

·         the capability to upload Shared Health Summaries and Event Summaries using compliant eHealth record software

·         electronic transfer of prescriptions to a prescription exchange service.


This week’s IM problem - Making patients fast before a cholesterol test

Question: Are you able to ask Medical Director if when a blood test is prescribed, e.g. cholesterol, as part of the printing that is associated with the typing of those words, FASTING is printed boldly on the referral form. Wouldn't that be handy?  We still have numerous patients who present for fasting tests, even though the box is ticked after eating breakfast. I am sure we are not the only ones with hungry patients!

I could get them a list with all the fasting tests that it could be associated with OR an Extra box or the same box made available to be ticked for fasting. The fasting part needs to be large and bold.

Failing that I am going to need to source a stamp or sticker.

Answer: This is not an MD issue but rather one for the pathology companies and their pre-printed forms which need to be changed so that fasting is presented bigger and bolder. I think the easiest solution is to use one of those fluorescent stickers with FASTING written on it and stick it onto the referral. Does anyone else have a better solution?


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Items of Interest

BeAWARE: signs for heart attack and stroke - Online training for non-clinical staff

Fifteen per cent of patients who experience warning signs of heart attack or stroke will call or attend a general practice as a first response.
Through the Heart Foundation's online learning and in-practice resources, BeAWARE educates your non-clinical staff to promptly place patients entering the practice system (by calling or attending) with suspected warning signs and immediately escalate the situation to a clinical staff member. BeAWARE also helps you to demonstrate adherence to accreditation standards and reduce your risk of medico-legal litigation. Click here.


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News for Practice Staff

Practice Nurse Incentive Program (PNIP)

2012 dates to remember:

·         30 June Cut-off date for top up and grandparenting applications

·         31 July ‘Point in time’ assessment for May PNIP quarterly payment

·         August DVA payment made to practices

·         31 October ‘Point in time’ assessment for August PNIP quarterly payment

To assist your application the PNIP Guidelines remain available from Medicare.

AGPN are interested to get your feedback about the PNIP. Please email with your comments.


“PNIP will 'nip' a lot of unfunded services in the bud”- Article written by Lynne Walker, Principal Network Advisor AGPN

Change is always difficult to accept and more often than not people will see the glass is 'half empty' before they realise it's actually 'half full'. This could be said for the Practice Nurse Incentive Program (PNIP), a revised funding package which is about expanding the financial incentives available for a number of nursing services, which previously went way under the nurse funding radar. To read the full article click here.


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Women’s Health

General Update on Pregnancy Care

A potpourri of pregnancy topics for GPs and shared maternity care affiliates; covering a range of common queries and concerns from GPs in their care of pregnant women


- To be aware of the advice to give to women planning pregnancy

- To be aware of investigations to consider in pregnancy

- To be aware of how to manage a range of common concerns in pregnancy

- To be aware of a range of management and referral options

Speaker: Dr Ines Rio, Head GP Liaison Unit and clinician at RWH

Tuesday 5th June, 7.30 pm - 9.15 pm (refreshments from 7pm)at The Royal Women's Hospital: Cnr Grattan St and Flemington Rds, Parkville. Seminar Room 7D, 7th Floor    

Parking is available at the car park under the hospital: accessible from Flemington Rd. Cost is $12 for 2 hours

RSVP: By 3 days prior to session to Ines Rio: Ph: 8345 2064 or email:  

RACGP CPD points: Applied for (4 category 2 points). These points will also contribute to 2014-2016 reaccreditation as a shared maternity care affiliate GP at RWH.


Vulvo Vaginal Issues – the perineum, Female genital mutilation

Speaker: Dr Kathy Cook, Obstetrician & Gynaecologist, Mercy Hospital for Women.

Tuesday 5 June, (previously advertised for Tues 19 June) 7-9pm (Registration & Refreshments from 6.30pm) at Level 4 Mercy Hospital for Women, Heidelberg.

Parking available free of charge in multi-level car park, accessible from Studley Road opposite train station. 4 (Category 2) points in the RACGP QI&CPD Program for the 2011-2013 triennium applied for. For further details and registration flyer click here or contact Merran Mackie on 8458 4833 or Email:


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Positions vacant/wanted

Please note: only new ads or resubmitted ads will be posted here. All other ads can be found on the website


Positions vacant


Northcote – F/T P/T VR GP or Subsequent Trainee GP position. Fully accredited, computerised, long established doctor owned practice in a new purpose built facility with a fabulous work environment. Ancillary Health, Pharmacy and Pathology services on site. Inquiries Diane Cronin (Practice Manager) 9481 1214. Visit our website


Whittlesea - full time or part time VR GPs wanted for new bulk billing clinic opening in Whittlesea, 80 percent offered. Contact gpmedrecs on 0413 814 941 for more information.


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The wife from hell

A police officer pulls over a speeding car. The officer says, “I clocked you at 80 miles per hour, sir."

The driver says, "Gee, officer I had it on cruise control at 60, perhaps your radar gun needs calibrating."

Not looking up from her knitting the wife says: "Now don't be silly dear, you know that this car doesn't have cruise control."

As the officer writes out the ticket, the driver looks over at his wife and growls, "Can't you please keep your mouth shut for once?"

The wife smiles demurely and says, "You should be thankful your radar detector went off when it did."

As the officer makes out the second ticket for the illegal radar detector unit, the man glowers at his wife and says through clenched teeth, "Darn it, woman, can't you keep your mouth shut?"

The officer frowns and says, "And I notice that you're not wearing your seat belt, sir. That's an automatic $75 fine."

The driver says, "Yeah, well, you see officer, I had it on, but took it off when you pulled me over so that I could get my license out of my back pocket."

The wife says, "Now, dear, you know very well that you didn't have your seat belt on. You never wear your seat belt when you're driving."

And as the police officer is writing out the third ticket the driver turns to his wife and barks, "WHY DON'T YOU PLEASE SHUT UP??"

The officer looks over at the woman and asks, "Does your husband always talk to you this way, Ma'am?"

"Only when he's been drinking.


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And remember


            …The sooner you fall behind, the more time you'll have to catch up.