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GCPHN Publication Generally Speaking for Gold Coast general practices

In the April edition

Local GPs showing support for future workforce

Gold Coast GPs are invited to supervise medial students, with a record-number of GPs attending the recent GP Trainer workshop at Gold Coast Primary Health Network (GCPHN).

Thirty-two clinicians attended the event in February, designed to assist local GPs to safely supervise registrars and medical students. Attendees had the opportunity to discuss the updates and implementation of the current curriculum for students and were able to exchange teaching tips and tricks to support quality teaching in General Practice.

Participants at the GP Trainer Workshop in February 2019.

CEO of GCPHN Matt Carrodus said that the steady climb of attendance at these events showed that local GPs were supportive in maintaining high quality education for the future workforce.

“We work closely with our partners Bond and Griffith Universities, as well as General Practice Training Queensland, to ensure that the quality of education and placements remains at a high standard,” CEO Matt Carrodus.

“The number of GPs and registrars who attended our most recent workshop is evidence that our local practices also want to continue this high-quality work.”

Dr Asma Gundru from Myhealth Helensvale Medical Centre said the workshop provided her with the opportunity to participate in important discussion and sharing of her own experiences.

“The workshop itself provided practical advice, invaluable knowledge and a better understanding of the expectations for both supervisors and medical students.”

“I am in a unique situation having been through my GP placements as a medical student on the Gold Coast and now it’s come full circle, with me being able to share some of my experiences with new medical students.”

An additional two GP Trainer workshops will be held this year, with the next one being held on Thursday 23 May in Springwood and the final one for the year being held in July at GCPHN.

For anyone interested in attending these events or offering placements, please contact the GCPHN Clinical Placements Team at

Dr David Rowlands

Gold Coast Primary Health Network (GCPHN) Board Chair

I would like to thank those GPs and Registrars who attended the GP Trainer Workshop in February. The evening was a great success, with 32 clinicians from across the Coast in attendance. Feedback from the evening has been extremely positive and it is a testament to our local GPs who are actively engaging in maintaining high quality education for our medical students.

Read more ...

Dr Kate Shapland

General Practice Gold Coast (GPGC) Board Chair

Over the past couple of years there has been a significant shift and effort made by the Gold Coast Hospital to improve communications. In particular, there has been a great deal of effort developing systems that have improved Clinical Handover and we are starting to see some very positive outcomes.

Read more ...


GCPHN seeking feedback on HealthyGC website

Gold Coast Primary Health Network (GCPHN) is seeking feedback to help us build a new and improved online platform to best meet the needs of our users. We want to increase our understanding of how the GCPHN website, HealthyGC, is currently perceived and experienced. 

If you are a user of our website, you are in an ideal position to give us first-hand information. It would be greatly appreciated, if you could take the time to participate in a brief survey. Your valuable feedback will help us to develop the features that are important for your continued use. This survey will be open until Friday 3 May 2019.

Program available for people with severe and enduring mental health concerns

Gold Coast general practitioners (GPs) have new treatment options available for their patients with severe and enduring mental health concerns, with a new program GCPHN has recently commissioned called Plus Social.

The clinical care coordination component provides: 
  • supports for individuals with, or for young people at risk of, severe mental illness
  • time limited (up to 26 weeks) clinical care coordination and wellbeing program
  • structured, recovery and goal-oriented services focused on creating significant improvements in quality of life, health and wellbeing
  • a patient-centred approach and a healthcare neighbourhood model, to support integrated care and enhanced community access to supports.

Referrals to the Plus Social program can only be from a GP or private psychiatrist using the Mental Health Stepped Care Services referral template (scroll down to Mental Health). There is capacity to take new patients.

The Plus Social program also provides an intake and triage service, available on 07 3186 4000. 

Psychological Treatment Services for People with Mental Illness in RACFs 

The Federal Department of Health has funded Primary Health Networks (PHNs) to commission psychological treatment services over four years (FY2018-22) targeting the mental health needs of people living in residential aged care facilities (RACFs). 

The PHNs are seeking input from key personnel of RACFs through a survey to ensure the stepped care service delivery model is co-designed to meet the needs of the individuals with mental illness and ensure success through early engagement with all key stakeholders. 

General Practice Liaison Unit

Opportunities for GPs in the Gold Coast Forensic Medicine Service

The Gold Coast Forensic Medicine Specialist Service is currently looking for GPs who are interested in part-time, temporary positions in Forensic Medicine. The Service is located in the Emergency Department of Gold Coast University Hospital (GCUH) and is one of only four services nationally.

Eradicating Hepatitis C in the Gold Coast community remains a high priority 

Dr Ingrid Francis, a GP with Special Interest at Gold Coast University Hospital, gives an update on treating patients with Hepatitis C and how GPs on the Gold Coast can help in eradicating the disease.

Mental Health / Alcohol & Other Drugs

Registrations now open for the MHPN: Working better together conference

Held over three weeks from 21 May - 6 June 2019, this conference will promote interdisciplinary mental health networking and collaborative mental health practice. 

Register now to attend live, interactive, web-based activities covering three content streams. Choose to register for one, two or all three.

Blue Knot Foundation training programs available for health professionals

Blue Knot Foundation deliver trauma-informed, vicarious trauma and complex trauma training across sectors around Australia and foster the knowledge, skills and tools you need to empower recovery with your trauma clients, with a focus on complex trauma clients.

Cancer Screening

Returning BreastScreen Queensland Clinical Examination Outcome Forms

BreastScreen Queensland (BSQ) are advising general practitioners that completed Clinical Examination Outcome Forms should be returned to BSQ with a recommendation (i.e. routine rescreen, further investigation required, etc). Promptly returning these forms greatly assists the local BSQ Gold Coast Service to meet BreastScreen Australia National Accreditation Standards. 


Digital Health

New incentive supports paperless healthcare

In support of a paperless industry, the Australian Digital Health Agency has launched an initiative to enhance secure messaging functionality by 2020.

The move is expected to help health professionals using different platforms to securely send important health information, such as referrals, specialist letters and hospital discharge summaries, to patients and other health professionals.


Is your practice prepared for the 2019 Influenza Immunisation Program?

Queensland Health have released updated details on the Influenza Immunisation Program for 2019, including specifics around deliveries of vaccines and how your practice can get prepared.

World Immunisation Week

24-30 April is World Immunisation Week and aims to highlight the collective action needed to ensure that every person is protected from vaccine-preventable diseases. This year’s theme: “Protected Together, #VaccinesWork”, encourages people at every level - from donors to the general public - to go further in their efforts to increase immunisation coverage for
the greater good. Health professionals can find an array of immunisation resources on the HealthyGC website.

Practice News

Immunisation tip

The Sharing Knowledge about Immunisation (SKAI) parent website has recently been launched, which provides a suite of resources and advice for parents and carers of infants and young children, designed to support and improve clinical conversations about childhood vaccinations. The SKAI parent website contains information about the vaccines included on the National Immunisation Program and answers the questions parents ask in accessible and easily interpreted format. We have added a link to the SKAI page on the HealthyGC Immunisation page. 

Accreditation Tip 1

For GPs

To assist practices with accreditation and the maintenance of high quality health records, the RACGP has developed a guide - Improving health record quality in general practice. This guide is designed to help general practices put systems in place to ensure they produce and maintain high-quality health records. Good quality patient health records ensure appropriate clinical decision making and continuity of care, especially with the increasing use of shared care models and the introduction of My Health Record. The guide can also assist you in meeting accreditation against the 5th Edition standards, by aligning information to the relevant accreditation Indicator. 

Accreditation Tip 2

For nurses

Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) Standards 5th edition and The National Vaccine Storage Guidelines 'Strive for 5'  underpins Accreditation Criterion GP6.1 – Maintaining vaccine potency.

Nurses and other practice staff should familiarise themselves with these guidelines, and nominate a member of the clinical team to take responsibility for cold chain management, to ensure clients receive effective immunisations. 

Accreditation Tip 3

For managers and support staff

Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) Standards 5th edition indicator C6.4>G - our practice has a policy about the use of social media is a mandatory activity within the Information Security Criterion C6.4.  While social media can be a useful tool for promoting your practice and keeping in contact with patients and your local community, there can be potential risks associated. The RACGP has developed a Guide for the use of social media, which provides recommendations regarding the use of the more popular social media platforms. It also includes a social media policy template practices can use to assist in meeting the above indicator.  

In Brief News

Queensland Pelvic Mesh Service now accepting referrals

The Queensland Pelvic Mesh Service (QPMS) is now accepting referrals from GPs. GPs are required to send the QPMS referral form to the fax number on the identified form, which specifies the minimum clinical information that is required to safely triage each referral. 

How GPs can help combat Australia's second biggest cancer killer

Cancer Council is asking general practitioners (GPs) to throw their support behind a new national campaign, following new research that shows they are a key source of information for patients eligible for the National Bowel Cancer Screening Program.

Updated version of National Palliative Care Strategy released

The Australian Department of Health have released an updated version of the National Palliative Care Strategy, which has been produced following the 2016 evaluation of the National Palliative Care Strategy 2010 and has been developed through extensive consultation.

Time-saving tool available for busy GPs seeking patient resources

The government-funded parenting website hosts a range of resources available for Australian general practitioners (GPs) who are looking for ways to help parents navigate the journey of raising a family.

Improve your team's practice in treating older Australians

Help your patients to both live and die well by providing high-quality, appropriate palliative care and advance care planning. With free information and tools on quality improvement, MBS reimbursement for delivery of palliative care services, PIP payments, My Health Record and more.

Moving Pictures: Dementia resources for Australia's multicultural communities

Moving Pictures is a project which aims to raise awareness about dementia for people from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds. 15 short films with people from Hindi-, Tamil-, Mandarin-, Cantonese and Arabic-speaking communities have been produced to help address some of the linguistic and cultural barriers people from CALD communities face.

Australian Medicinal Cannabis Safety and Effectiveness Study

The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), in collaboration with the University of Melbourne and the Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics at the University of Sydney, are currently running a survey for doctors and their patients on their experiences with medicinal cannabis.

What's on

View all upcoming events 

FEATURED: 3 May 2019
Regional Private Practice Seminar Series One

Join Michelle Cowan, Senior Industrial Officer, AMA Queensland and Samantha Miklos, Director, Cornerstone Medical Recruitment for invaluable insights into avoiding the legal and cultural pitfalls during recruitment and public relation opportunities. 

Who should attend:
  • General practitioners
  • Specialists
  • Allied health professionals
  • Practice managers
  • Practice support staff
Allocated 15 AAPM CPD points.

For more information or to register, click here

GCPHN Professional Events

Wednesday 8 May
Benchmarque: Chronic Disease Support Program
8.45am-4.30pm, Robina

Saturday 11 May
Wound Management: Active Learning Module
9am-4.30pm, Robina

Thursday 23 May
GP Trainer Workshop
6pm-9pm, Springwood

Wednesday 29 May
Surviving and thriving through accreditation: Practice performance, privacy, risks & management
6.30pm-8.30pm, Robina

Wednesday 5 June
Foot Health Assessment Program
8.45am-4.30pm, Robina

Click here to see all GCPHN Professional Events


View online - Primary Healthcare Positions Vacant

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Word Count: 75 words     Layout: Dot points
Generally Speaking is a monthly publication produced by Gold Coast Primary Health Network. It is an important resource for general practice, with local information on GP/practice nurse training and education, quality initiatives, referral information, events, job notifications and local Gold Coast health and community programs that can benefit general practitioners and patients.
Level 1, 14 Edgewater Court, Robina Qld 4226  |  PO Box 3576 Robina Town Centre Qld 4230
P:  07 5635 2455  |  F:  07 5635 2466  |  E:  |

Gold Coast Primary Health Network would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the Gold Coast and surrounding areas, the Yugambeh, Yuggera and Bundjalung peoples. 

Gold Coast Primary Health Network gratefully acknowledges the financial and other support from the Australian Government Department of Health.

While the Australian Government Department of Health has contributed to the funding of this material, the information contained in it does not necessarily reflect the views of the Australian Government and is not advice that is provided, or information that is endorsed, by the Australian Government. The Australian Government is not responsible in negligence or otherwise for any injury, loss or damage however arising from the use of or reliance on the information provided herein.
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