Welcome to Brisbane South PHN's new-look weekly newsletter for primary health care providers.
We understand primary care is a busy environment so we have streamlined our communication and activities to focus on identified priorities that reflect the needs of our region each quarter. From September to November 2021, we are focusing our activities and communication with you on:
• Alcohol and Other Drugs
• Older People
• Children and Youth.
We welcome your feedback. Let us know what you think at email@example.com. Happy reading!
Serving the region - Brisbane South PHN update
This week at Brisbane South PHN, we are:
- Working with general practices to coordinate transfer of vaccines at risk of expiry to vaccination providers who have capacity and ability to administer quickly.
- Supporting general practices to access additional Pfizer vaccines as they become available from the Commonwealth and Queensland Health supplies at short notice.
- Planning and commissioning service providers to improve vaccination access amongst vulnerable communities, particularly our culturally and linguistically diverse communities, people experiencing homelessness, and people unable to leave home to access vaccinations.
- Escalating feedback from general practices to the Department for clarification or response.
- Triaging and sharing COVID-19 information relevant to our practices and the region.
Brisbane South PHN sends out letters advising of changes to personal protective equipment (PPE) escalation levels, and we would like to note that in the last week, risk level has changed from ‘moderate’ to ‘low’ in the whole Brisbane south region, and more recently Brisbane, Logan and Redland local government areas (LGAs) have returned to ‘moderate’, with Scenic Rim currently at ‘low’. We aim to keep our website up to date with the current risk escalation level for our region. Check the Chief Health Officer public health directions site for updates and current directions.
ATAGI statement about the need for additional doses of COVID-19 vaccines
The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) has released a statement about the need for COVID-19 vaccine booster shots. ATAGI is closely assessing local and international data on the frequency and severity of COVID-19 in fully vaccinated individuals. At this stage, ATAGI anticipates there will only be a small cohort of people requiring a third dose of a COVID-19 vaccination as part of their primary course of vaccination against COVID-19.
Weighing up the benefits and risks of COVID-19 vaccination: A focus on safety
The National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance Australia (NCIRS) is hosting a webinar on supporting your patients to make informed decisions in relation to COVID-19 vaccine safety. It will be held on Wednesday 13 October 2021 at 11.30 am (AEST).
Proof of COVID-19 vaccines and ordering of printed products
Services Australia have resources to help support your patients to get proof of their COVID-19 vaccinations. Please visit the Services Australia website for information and resources. Doctors, health professionals, practice staff and pharmacy assistants can also order related printed products, including a vaccination appointment card, DL flyer and A3 poster.
Information on fit testing providers
RESP-FIT contains a register of accredited fit testers and is an ideal contact point for further information around fit-testing. Each state and territory have their own requirements for the training and correct use of PPE. The Worksafe Queensland website details the requirements of fit-testing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Prescribing or dispensing? You need to register for QScript now
From 28 October 2021, relevant health practitioners will be required to check QScript for patient records before:
- prescribing a monitored medicine for a patient
- dispensing a monitored medicine for a patient
- giving a treatment dose of a monitored medicine for a patient.
The recently passed Medicines and Poisons Act 2019 legislation specifies penalties that can be imposed if health practitioners do not take reasonable steps to check QScript when required. There will be exceptions in some circumstances, including when treating patients in an emergency.
Health practitioners will be supported as they integrate QScript into their practice and become familiar with their legislative responsibilities.
Registration is open for the following health practitioners:
- medical practitioners
- nurse practitioners
- endorsed midwives
- podiatric surgeons and endorsed podiatrists.
Health practitioners can register for QScript by clicking the QScript registration link sent to their AHPRA-registered email address or register below.
Queensland Pelvic Mesh Service update
In mid-September 2021, Queensland Health contacted approximately 18,500 Queensland women via letter who have undergone procedures to treat Pelvic Organ Prolapse and Stress Urinary Incontinence in Queensland Health facilities, to advise of potential complications with pelvic (transvaginal) mesh.
General Practitioners (GPs) may be able to assist with this when women seek advice in relation to the pelvic mesh implant, or where they can seek treatment if they are experiencing symptoms.
Expression of interest for Brisbane South PHN Advisory Councils - applications close today!
Health professionals and community representatives who want to make a difference in the Brisbane south region are invited to apply to join one of Brisbane South PHN’s 2 advisory councils.
- The Clinical Advisory Council assists the organisation to develop local strategies that will improve the health care system for health consumers.
- The Community Advisory Council advises on local issues to better meet the unique needs of our communities.
Together, they help guide the development of Brisbane South PHN’s strategy and activities and play an important role in providing advice on health issues and initiatives in the region.
To ensure the councils focus on local needs, it is preferred that applicants live or work within the Brisbane South PHN boundaries and have strong links with those communities. First Nations Peoples, people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, people living with disability and members of the LGBTQIA+ community are strongly encouraged to apply.
Applications close today, 30 September 2021.
Is your practice looking for more support in adopting a person-centred care approach?
Brisbane South PHN have partnered with AGPAL and national leaders in primary care to offer 2 person-centred care programs supporting general practices in the region to:
- build effective teams
- focus on quality improvement activities and
- improve interactions and outcomes for patients.
The programs support practices to meet the accreditation requirements set by the Royal Australian College of General Practice (RACGP) and the Practice Incentive Program for Quality Improvement (PIP QI). The 2 programs on offer are 1) People, Leadership and Teams Program, and 2) the Optimal Care Quality Improvement Program. More information on these programs can be found through our Program Overview document and FAQ document.
If you and your practice team are interested in participating in any of these programs, please complete the expression of interest form and a Brisbane South PHN team member will be in contact. Alternatively, you can email our Support team below.
Seeking expressions of interest to join Brisbane South Lived Experience Advisory Group
Brisbane South PHN has partnered with Metro South Addiction and Mental Health Services to recruit the following people to be part of a Brisbane South Lived/Living Experience Advisory Group (LEAG):
- People with a lived/living experience of suicide attempt or ideation, mental health or alcohol and other drug use concerns
- Carers or close supporters of people with a lived/living experience of suicide attempt or ideation, mental health or alcohol and other drug use concerns.
The LEAG will provide strategic advice and recommendations that guide the development and implementation of the Brisbane South Joint Regional Plan, and other important health service and support initiatives.
EOI applications close on Monday 11 October 2021.
Webinar: A guide to naloxone for General Practitioners
Opioids, both licit and illicit substances, have been the leading class of drug present in drug-induced deaths in Australia for the last two decades. Naloxone, sometimes called Narcan, is a drug that can temporarily reverse the effects of an opioid overdose or adverse reaction. This webinar focuses on providing General Practitioners (GPs) with vital information on naloxone and how it can and should be used in general practice.
Workforce development and training
Ensure your patients experiencing substance misuse are referred to relevant support services
Did you know you can create reports to identify your patients who may have alcohol and other drug concerns? Instructions linked below demonstrate how to identify patients where ‘Drug Abuse’ has been selected in their patient file. This will allow you to review the data to ensure patients have been referred to a relevant support service.
Direct Access Endoscopy (DAE) - the quicker pathway
The DAE Pathway is the most direct pathway to public endoscopy services and is only suitable for patients requiring gastrointestinal endoscopy procedures within Metro South Health (MSH) facilities. Patients must meet the minimum referral criteria as per the MSH Refer Your Patient (RYP) website and do not require specialist consultation prior to the procedure. Eligible patients can be referred to DAE for:
- suspected malignancy
- positive FOBT
- follow-up or surveillance procedures (no greater than 3 months from due date)
- strong family history of gastrointestinal cancers, or
- confirmation of coeliac disease with positive serology (or strong suspicion despite negative serology).
Essential referral information, along with the DAE Referral Form and Consent form, is available in GP Smart Referrals. It can also be found on RYP – DAE Colonoscopy and DAE Endoscopy.
SpotOnHealth HealthPathways - breast health
Taking care of your mental health and wellness
At times like these, with the COVID-19 pandemic placing unprecedented pressures on our primary health care providers, it has never been more important to look after your physical and mental wellness.
We’re offering free, confidential counselling for primary health providers through our Employee Assistance Program.
SpotOnHealthPathways also provides a COVID-19 Mental Health Support for Clinicians pathway, plus a series of Doctor Health and Wellbeing resources.
We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we work, and of the many different nations across the wider Brisbane south region. We pay our respects to the Elders, past, present and emerging, as the holders of the memories, the traditions, the culture and the spiritual wellbeing of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples across the nation. We acknowledge any Sorry Business that may be affecting the communities as a whole. In the spirit of reconciliation, partnership and mutual respect, we will continue to work together with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to shape a health system which responds to the needs and aspirations of the community.
While the Australian Government has contributed funding for this material, it has not reviewed the content and is not responsible for any injury, loss or damage however arising from the use of, or reliance on, the information provided herein.